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LA Dodgers1 0 0 0 1 0 2 2 x 670
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  W: W. Buehler (1-0)   L: P. Corbin (0-1)
5:37 PM PT6:37 PM MT7:37 PM CT8:37 PM ET20:37 ET0:37 GMT8:37 5:37 PM MST7:37 PM EST8:07 PM VEN4:37 UAE (+1)7:37 PM CT, October 3, 2019
Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles, California  Attendance: 53,095

Nats ride momentum into Game 1 vs. Dodgers

According to STATS
According to STATS

Washington Nationals at Los Angeles Dodgers

  1. The Dodgers won 100+ games for the second time in three seasons en route to their seventh consecutive NL West title. This is the third-longest streak of consecutive division titles won by any team since MLB was broken into divisions in 1969. The Braves won 14 straight NL East crowns from 1991-2005 and the Yankees took the AL East in nine straight seasons from 1998-2006.
  2. The Nationals defeated the Brewers, 4-3, in Tuesday's NL Wild Card game. Washington took the lead in the bottom of the 8th when three runs scored on a Juan Soto single and error by right fielder Trent Grisham. Soto became the youngest player in MLB postseason history to come to the plate in the 8th inning or later with his team trailing and deliver the game-tying (or go-ahead) RBI.
  3. The Dodgers won four of seven meetings between these teams in the regular season, through the teams split four games played at Dodger Stadium. These teams last met in the playoffs in the 2016 NLDS with the Dodgers winning the series in five games.
  4. Los Angeles set the National League record with 279 home runs this season, while Washington was one of 15 teams to set a single-season franchise record in home runs in 2019 with 231.
  5. This will be the fifth career postseason start for Walker Buehler; in his first four, the righty has posted a 3.80 ERA across 23.2 innings, while limiting opponents to a .190 batting average. Buehler's most recent postseason appearance came in Game 3 of the World Series in 2018, when he pitched seven shutout innings in a 3-2 win over the Red Sox.
  6. After pitching six seasons with Arizona, Patrick Corbin will be making his postseason debut in his first season with the Nationals. Corbin has made 21 appearances (19 starts) in his career against the Dodgers, pitching to a 3.36 ERA across 109.2 IP. Justin Turner has fared well against Corbin over their careers, batting .375 (12-for-32) with five extra-base hits and four walks to just three strikeouts.
  7. In 49 career postseason games, Justin Turner has recorded a .420 on-base percentage. Of the 100 players all-time with at least 150 career postseason PA, Turner's OBP ranks fifth behind Babe Ruth (.470), Barry Bonds (.433), Albert Pujols (.431) and Jason Giambi (.425).
Notes Applicable For Series Dates: 10/3/2019 thru 10/3/2019

No strangers to meeting at this time of the year, the Washington Nationals and Los Angeles Dodgers will hook up in a National League Division Series starting Thursday at Dodger Stadium that would have been hard to predict in May.

The Dodgers looked every bit a playoff team with a 39-19 record before the start of June, better than their mark at the same point in 2018 (26-30) and 2017 (33-21). And in both of those seasons, Los Angeles made the World Series.

The Nationals, though, were 24-33 at the end of May, with manager Davey Martinez's job in jeopardy and with no Bryce Harper available to rescue the offense after his move to Philadelphia.

Enter an 18-8 June, a 46-27 second half and an eighth-inning comeback Tuesday for a 4-3 NL wild-card victory over the Milwaukee Brewers that Nationals fans will not forget anytime soon.

It makes the upcoming best-of-five set the second NLDS between the teams since 2016. In the previous one, the Dodgers won a five-game classic, with Clayton Kershaw recording the final two outs of the clincher in relief.

The Dodgers had a 4-3 advantage in the 2019 season series, with the teams splitting a four-game set at Los Angeles in May.

"They're obviously a good team, great starting pitching, good lineup and deep," Nationals shortstop Trea Turner said of the Dodgers. "So it's going to be tough. But I think if there's a team that's ever been ready to face some adversity, it's this one right here."

The Nationals will send left-hander Patrick Corbin (14-7, 3.25 ERA) to the mound in Game 1. He is 5-9 with a 3.36 ERA over 21 lifetime appearances (19 starts) against the Dodgers, with a 2.97 ERA in 11 career starts at Dodger Stadium.

He faced Los Angeles once this year, and he fired seven shutout innings in a 6-0 win at Dodger Stadium on May 9.

The Dodgers selected Walker Buehler (14-4, 3.26 ERA) as their Game 1 starter over Kershaw (16-5, 3.03), who is expected to pitch in Game 2. Buehler is 0-1 with a 3.38 ERA in three career appearances (two starts) against the Nationals. He had a 2.92 ERA in two starts against Washington this season.

Los Angeles closer Kenley Jansen has been shaky with 33 saves in 41 chances and a career-high 3.71 ERA, and the Dodgers and Nationals were tied with an NL-worst 29 blown saves. But overall, Los Angeles relievers had an NL-best 3.78 ERA, while the Nationals were last (5.56).

The Dodgers are powered by an offense that set a National League record with 279 home runs and led the NL with 886 runs scored. The Nationals were second at 873.

Dodgers MVP candidate Cody Bellinger hit 47 home runs, drove in 115 runs and was second in the NL with a 1.035 on-base-plus-slugging percentage (OPS). Nationals MVP candidate Anthony Rendon had 34 homers, an NL-best 126 RBIs and a 1.010 OPS.

The Dodgers are expected to be at full strength with third baseman Justin Turner back from ankle and back issues. On the pitching side, left-hander Rich Hill (forearm, knee) is expected to start Game 4, if necessary, while right-hander Joe Kelly (undisclosed lower-body soreness) will be in the bullpen.

"Guys are ready to start playing playoff baseball," said Dodgers manager Dave Roberts, whose team won its last seven regular-season games. "I think the way we attacked the games of the last couple weeks shows we're prepared for the postseason and not sort of thinking these games are meaningless and we're sleep-walking into the postseason. We're ready to go."

--Field Level Media

Updated October 2, 2019

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