Summary of NL Wild Card Game

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There are few things on earth that are better than October baseball. The changing of the seasons also indicates the start of the Major League Baseball (MLB) postseason. The wild card game in the National League (NL) took place Wednesday, Oct. 6.


And the game lived up to its name—wild.


The game showcased the red-hot St. Louis Cardinals squaring off on the road against the Los Angeles Dodgers.


For fans willing to stay up late to watch, they were rewarded with an instant classic.


For starters (no pun intended), the starting pitching matchup was thrilling, with the 40-year-old ageless wonder, Adam Wainwright, for the Cardinals and perennial All-Star Max Scherzer for Dodgers.


The Cardinals were able to score one run in the first thanks to a passed ball from Dodgers catcher Will Smith. St. Louis second baseman Tommy Edman raced home on the error after leading off the game with a single to right field. 1-0 St. Louis.


For the remainder of the game, the Cardinals could not capitalize on Scherzer’s shaky start or produce anything off the Dodger bullpen. Scherzer routinely struggled throughout his outing with throwing a lot of pitches, and only made it—despite his desire to pitch more—through 4 ⅓ innings.


He finished with one run and three hits allowed, three walks and four strikeouts.


The Dodger offense would not get going until the bottom of the fourth inning, when third baseman Justin Turner hit a home run into the left field bleachers off of Wainwright. The game was knotted at one. Other than a few nerving situations, Wainwright remained fairly unscathed throughout his start.


He would pitch 5 ⅓ innings, allowing one run on four hits, two walks and striking out five.


For the rest of the game both teams would rely on their bullpens.


The Dodgers called on pitchers Joe Kelly, Brudsar Graterol, Blake Treinen, Corey Knebel and Kenley Jansen. Despite some challenges, this group combined to shutout the Cardinals over 4 ⅔ innings.


The Cardinals looked to relievers Luis Garcia, Giovani Gallegos and TJ McFarland to hold down the explosive Dodger offense. They did just that, blanking LA over three innings.


Then came the bottom of the ninth.


After being tied at one for what seemed like eternity, the Dodgers came to bat with the chance to end the game. Manager Dave Roberts called upon a former Cardinals legend, Albert Pujols, to pinch hit. A storybook ending in the making—one of St. Louis’ most beloved figures eliminating his former team in the playoffs. 


But these thoughts were short lived as Pujols lined out to St. Louis center fielder Harrison Badder.


After McFarland walked Dodgers center fielder Cody Bellinger, St. Louis manager Mike Schildt called upon struggling All-Star Alex Reyes to face struggling All-Star Chris Taylor.




Taylor crushed a Reyes slider into the Los Angeles night, sending Dodger Stadium into a frenzy. An ecstatic Taylor circled the bases, pumping his fist as he was mobbed by his teammates at home plate. 3-1 Dodgers. Game over.


October baseball has a litany of historic moments, and Taylor’s game winning home run will certainly join that group.


The Dodgers will face their division rival San Francisco Giants in Game five of the quarterfinals in what is shaping up to be a historic and exciting clash.