The Cardinals are moving on while the Dodgers are going home. For the second year in a row, St. Louis blasted NL MVP and Sy Young favorite Clayton Kershaw in the seventh inning with a three-run home run off of the bat off of Matt Adam’s bat. Those three runs proved to be the only runs the Cardinals needed to eliminate Los Angeles with a final score of 3-2.
Kershaw came into the game on three days rest and was flawless for six innings, limiting the Cardinals and rendering them scoreless, giving up only one hit. Kershaw seemed determined, throwing 94 pitches in those first six innings and had the 2-0. Any other GM would have pulled their pitcher on short rest, but the Dodgers biggest weakness all season has been middle relief pitching. With the season on the line, Kershaw took the mound as the next eight pitches ended their season.
Matt Holliday got the Cardinals started with a single off the glove of second basemen Dee Gordon. Next, Jhonny Peralta hit a line drive single off the tip of Hanley Ramirez’ glove. With Holliday and Peralta on first and second, Matt Addams stepped up to the plate and blasted Kershaw’s curveball over the right-field wall for the 3-2 lead.
St. Louis will go on to face the San Francisco Giants in the National League Championship Series, their ninth NLCS appearance in 15 years, on Saturday for a best-of-seven series to determine the National League representative in this year’s World Series. Meanwhile, the Dodgers head into the off-season wondering what went wrong as the team finished the regular season as NL West Champions with a payroll of $256 million and a roster chalk full of undeniable talent.