The Los Angeles Dodgers fell flat in Game 6 of the National League Championship Series, ensuring a win-or-go-home elimination bout with the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park on Saturday.
Despite cracking the scoreboard first with a leadoff home run by David Freese, Hyun-Jin Ryu couldn’t capitalize on the early lead and surrendered four two-out runs in the bottom half of the inning.
The Brewers never looked back from there and pulled out a 7-2 victory, limiting the Dodgers’ lineup to only five hits in the contest. Los Angeles went 0-for-3 with runners in scoring position, and for the most part, squandered the few opportunities they had.
A subplot was Manny Machado playing his first game in Milwaukee since kicking Jesús Aguilar on the back of the leg. The two exchanged words and benches cleared, though the incident did not escalate from there.
Machado was not suspended but did receive a fine. As expected, he was booed during pregame introductions and during every plate appearance.
But when asked about the hostile environment, the Dodgers shortstop kept the focus on the field, via Bill Plunkett of the Southern California News Group:
“It was a tough loss for us today. We’ve got to come back tomorrow and do a better job,” Machado said, deflecting questions about the crowd’s effect on him. “None of us picked each other up today. We have to do a better job of that tomorrow.”
As Machado points out, the Dodgers’ woes on Friday were contagious throughout the lineup. The 26-year-old particularly struggled in Game 6, going 0-for-4 with two strikeouts and stranding three runners on base.
He and the team will now need a bounce-back effort if they’re to extend their season by reaching the World Series for a matchup with the Boston Red Sox.
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