Dodgers win series! Dodgers win series! Dodgers win series! Dodgers win series!
There’s a new radio call in town. There is a new ruler from an old rivalry. There’s a new answer to the endless Bay Area chants of “Beat LA… Beat LA”
Take that, Bobby Thomson’s shot . Take that, Juan Marichal’s bat. Take that, the Joe Morgan circuit and the laughter of Will Clark and The Pirouette of Barry Bonds .
On a hectic and screaming Thursday night at Oracle Park, with orange towels slamming their faces and desperate gibes gripping their ankles, the Dodgers crushed memories and settled scores to win the biggest grudge match ever. the history of the franchise.
In arguably the biggest game of the two teams’ 131 years of competition, the Dodgers not only beat the San Francisco Giants, but finished them, finished them and overcame them en route to October.
In the first playoff game of 2,540 games in the team’s history, in the decisive fifth game of the National League Division series, the Dodgers cut and made their way to a ninth inning to achieve a 2-1 victory and a series victory. .
Welcome to the history of the rivalry, Cody Bellinger’s dying breath smashing the single at right field with a ninth putout. He marked Justin Turner with the eventual winning run. Bellinger pointed the finger at the jubilant Dodgers shelter to first base. He knew, and they knew.
“It’s obviously an amazing team… it’s an incredible victory… to come here and get this victory,” said Bellinger.
Welcome to the history of the rivalry also to starter Max Scherzer, who took the mound at the bottom of the ninth in relief and outlasted the Giants, ending the game with a controversial Wilmer Flores strikeout with Kris Bryant at first base. , causing the Dodgers to dance out of their dugout canoe.
Replays show Flores clearly verified his swing on a 0-2 pitch, but first baseman Gabe Morales saw the opposite, called him out, ending the tumultuous streak in turmoil.
And with the first stop in Scherzer’s 14-year career.
“It’s Scherzer being Scherzer, dude,” Bellinger said. “He’s a player. He’s a competitor.
The Giants fans who had been so loud and heart-wrenching all night long walked out of the building cursing and gesturing. Meanwhile, several hundred Dodgers fans remained, gathering behind the Dodgers dugout to serenade their champagne-drinking heroes as they stepped out to greet.
“Moo-kie, Moo-kie,” they yelled at Mookie Betts, who had four hits and scored a run.
“MVP, MVP” they shouted at the shirtless Scherzer.
“Ju-lio, Ju-lio” they applauded starting pitcher Julio Urías, who didn’t actually start but still pitched four solid innings.
The Dodgers were thrilled, full of energy and completely exhausted.
“We put everything we could into this series and it took everything we had to beat these guys,” said Dodgers manager Dave Roberts.
The Giants, despite ending the season with 109 overall wins and the best record in baseball, finished.
The Dodgers, meanwhile, advance to the National League Championship Series for the fifth time in six years, and for the second time in a row against the Atlanta Braves, in a best-of-seven duel that begins on Saturday at Atlanta.
Their house in Truist Park is barren. Their rivalry with the Dodgers is zero. After enduring five crazy games for the Giants, this is going to seem odd at first.
“There is no disappointment,” said Roberts. “I have no doubt our guys will be ready to beat the Braves.”
Last fall, the Braves led the Dodgers 3-1 in the NLCS before the Dodgers won three straight games to propel them to a World Series they ultimately won. But this year, the Braves don’t seem equipped to offer a similar challenge, as they finished the regular season with 18 fewer wins while scoring 135 fewer points. The Braves will be deprived of their most exciting player, injured Ronald Acuna Jr, and could miss one of his powerful substitutes, Jorge Soler, sidelined by COVID.
The Braves will have the field advantage as they won the National Eastern League when the Dodgers were the wild card, but the Dodgers should be in a position to win it by the time they complete all three games at Dodger Stadium.
If the Dodgers can win the NLCS and qualify for their fourth World Series in five years, either the Houston Astros or the Boston Red Sox will be waiting for them.
Considering the Astros cheated on the Dodgers for a World Series title in 2017, facing them would be nice.
But, seriously, can something be as sweet as what just happened?
Ahead of Thursday’s game, retiree Vin Scully tweeted from the top of the mountain.
“To my knowledge, tonight’s game between the @Dodgers and the @SFGiants is the most important game in the history of their rivalry. With almost identical records and so much at stake, I think it is. “
When Roberts read the tweet, he shook his head and smiled.
“Now I feel the pressure,” he said. “Damn, Vin! “
Once again, you’re right, Vin.
He only thought that the final battle of the tense five-game series would stretch to the last set and even the final.
The score was tied 1-1 early in the ninth after both teams scored in the sixth, the Dodgers on Corey Seager’s RBI brace, the Giants on the Darin Ruf Tour.
Facing young Giants reliever Camilo Doval, Justin Turner took first base when he was planted in the left arm, then six shots later, Gavin Lux cut a single to the right.
Then Bellinger, who had the worst statistical punching season of any former MVP in history, continued his October resurgence by fighting a pitch and making it history.
“It wasn’t about the mechanics, it was just a fight,” said Roberts. “It was me against you. Cody versus Doval.
Bellinger won. Then it was time for Scherzer to step into the ring.
In the bottom of the ninth, after Bryant hit the first base when Turner threw a Grounder on the third base, Scherzer held on, taking out Lamont Wade Jr. and Flores, albeit in a controversial manner.
Afterward, Morales said he obviously thought it was a swing, but team manager Ted Barrett wouldn’t let him answer a question about whether the replay had changed his mind.
“Yeah, no, we, yeah, yeah, he didn’t mean it,” Barrett said.
Would a different call be a game-changer? May be. But, given that this is a human game, was Morales the only person on the pitch Thursday who made a mistake that hurt the Giants? Absolutely not. That failed call didn’t beat the Giants. The Dodgers did it.
“I think what big ball clubs have the ability to do is understand the gravity of the moment… give it their all right now,” said Roberts.
The Dodgers get it. The Dodgers owned.
Through three centuries, this beautiful rivalry with the Giants has known great moments.
The biggest part so far has been with the Dodgers.