As the Los Angeles Dodgers look to make a rare third consecutive trip to the World Series this season, their play has more closely matched that of the 2017 club that led the Majors with 104 wins, than last year’s group that needed Game 163 to win the National League West.
Despite coming off a loss to the New York Mets, the Dodgers entered play Wednesday having won 11 of their last 15 games. They appeared poised for a second straight defeat at Dodger Stadium but mounted a comeback in the late innings, capped off by a four-run ninth.
They started the final inning with back-to-back home runs off Mets closer Edwin Diaz, which were followed by consecutive doubles that tied the game. Alex Verdugo’s walk-off sacrifice fly with the bases loaded wound up being the only out Diaz recorded.
Following his club’s win, manager Dave Roberts said the relentless effort epitomized who the Dodgers are as a team, via SportsNet LA:
“Team win. Our offense, those guys are relentless. They’re relentless. We talk about picking each other up. Walker was stressed today, got through five innings, had to cover four innings out of the ‘pen. Our guys seemed like we were out of it for a little bit, and they bring their two best guys at the back of the bullpen again — saw them last night — to go up there and keep scratching, clawing, starting with that Joc at-bat and it just kept going from there. It was just the fight when the game seemed in the balance. For us to continue to fight, scratch and claw to get back in there, that just defines this ballclub.”
The Dodgers’ deficit grew to five runs, which marked the comeback win their largest this season. They trailed by as many as four runs to the Pittsburgh Pirates before hanging on for a 7-6 win, also at Dodger Stadium, on April 28.
The walk-off win was the Dodgers’ second this season. The 2017 team had 10 such victories. In keeping with the parallels between the two years, the Dodgers now are an MLB-best 21-7 at home this season.
They set a franchise record with 57 wins at Dodger Stadium in 2017. The 1953 Brooklyn team, who won the National League pennant, holds the organization’s all-time record with 60 home wins.