The Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Washington Nationals 4-3 in Game 5 to advance to the NLCS and they got some help in the ninth inning from an unlikely source: Clayton Kershaw.
With the Dodgers protecting a 1-run lead in the ninth inning, manager Dave Roberts stuck with closer Kenley Jansen even though he came into the game in the seventh inning and had already thrown 37 pitches over two innings. Jansen struck out the first batter in the ninth, but then walked Bryce Harper and Jayson Werth.
At that point you could tell Jansen was on fumes. So manager Dave Roberts came out and signalled to the bullpen for Kershaw.
In came Kershaw even though he had started Game 4 and thrown 110 pitches just two days earlier!
So it was Kershaw with one out. The tying run was on second base, the winning run was on first base, and the left-handed hitting Daniel Murphy was at the plate.
Murphy, who hit .347 during the regular season, popped up to second base for the second out.
Nationals manager Dusty Baker then went to pinch hitter Wilmer Difo with two outs.
With two strikes, Kershaw got Difo to swing at a pitch in the dirt and it was game over.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.