Dodgers to Host Cardinals in 2021 National League Wild Card Game

As it turned out, a ninth consecutive division title was not in the books for the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers held up their end of the bargain by defeating the Brewers in their regular season finale, but the Giants did not give the Dodgers the help they needed to force a one-game divisional playoff.

The Dodgers used a six-run fifth inning — powered by another clutch grand slam from Trea Turner — to cruise to a 10-3 victory. The rally happened just in time for Walker Buhler to secure his 16th win of the year, a career high.

The Giants defeated the Padres 11-4 to clinch the division title by one full game over Los Angeles.

Buehler’s efforts have seemingly put him right in the middle of an NL Cy Young race with teammates Max Scherzer, Julio Urias, and Milwaukee starter Corbin Burnes, who started the game for the Brewers against the Dodgers on Saturday.

Buehler went five innings, allowing one run on three hits and a walk while striking out an impressive 11 batters. He threw 79 pitches.

Relievers Phil Bickford and Justin Bruihl combined for a perfect sixth inning for Los Angeles, while youngster Andre Jackson threw the final three frames of the afternoon to seal the win.

The biggest scare of the game for the Dodgers came in the third inning when first baseman Max Muncy, trying to field a throw from catcher Will Smith, collided with Milwaukee second baseman Jace Peterson. Muncy was pulled from the game after sustaining an injury to his elbow, but the severity remains unknown.

The Dodgers finished the regular season scalding hot, having won 18 of their last 21 games and 15 straight contests at home, which could provide a huge advantage against the Cardinals. St. Louis recently finished a hot streak of their own after winning 17 straight contests.

The Dodgers’ 106 regular season wins tie the 2019 club for the most in franchise history.

The Wild Card game is set to take place on Wednesday and will be televised on TBS. Both teams have already announced their starters in Scherzer and Adam Wainwright. Scherzer faced Wainwright in the 2019 NLCS and earned the win after throwing seven scoreless innings on just one hit while striking out 11 batters.

By no means will the Dodgers be looking past the Cardinals, but if Los Angeles wins the Wild Card game on Wednesday, they will subsequently face the Giants in a playoff series for the first time in team history.

10 thoughts on “Dodgers to Host Cardinals in 2021 National League Wild Card Game

  1. 106 wins is an incredible accomplishment. The Dodger organization should be pleased with their year so far. The Bauer situation along with the major injuries such as Rios, May, and others could have stopped any team. My best wishes to Kershaw.
    Congratulations to Urias for a 20-year win. Turner won the batting title and is in the hunt for the MVP. Scherzer may win the Cy Young. When has a team traded mid-season for a batting title winner and a CY Yong winner? Friedman is amazing.
    We all hope the Dodgers can win it all. I am very concerned with the Cardinals they have some very good players that make contact in their line-up.
    As we have discussed I think there will be a long strike delaying the Baseball season. What will the 2022 rotation look like? What will the roster look like with Taylor, Seager, Kelly, Jansen, Scherzer, being free agents, and the questions on Kershaw’s forearm?

  2. Just finished listening to Doc’s post game presser. He said Max will not be in the WC on Wednesday and, as usual, was rather vague about anything after that, but from the sound of things, I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see Max finished for the year.

    So, just in the last couple of days, we’ve lost our #4 starter and our homer and RBI leader, probably for the entirety of the playoffs. As we all know, anything can happen in a single playoff game. I think we go in as slight favorites, but it certainly wouldn’t be a shocker if the Cards win that game. I just hope we can score early so that Scherzer isn’t feeling that any run he gives up could cost him the game.

    I’ve now observed the Giants over a full 162 game schedule and have seen them win 107 times and I’m still convinced that every team they meet in the post season should be able to beat them. I absolutely don’t understand that team but I tip my hat to them. They’ve had a great season……………………………… far.

    1. Never a Giant fan but have to tip my hat to them. They won 107 games. They do not impress but they do win.

  3. With Muncy out, I think Beaty deserves to start Wednesday at 1B and Lux in CF. Who gets promoted from the 40 man roster? McKinstry, Raley or Neuse? Probably McKinstry. If we win, Pujols starts against lefties. We obviously need a great start from Scherzer.

  4. Need guys that can make contact if there is a pitcher’s duel. We will certainly miss Muncy if he is out. I am hoping the Dodgers can use the speed of Trea Turner, Betts, and Lux to manufacture some runs if needed.

  5. Scherzer is 2-0 against the Cardinals this season. He has allowed 1 run in 14 innings of work and the run was unearned. He will be on 6 days rest. Game is at 5:10 Pacific time, which means both teams will be dealing with the shadows and the outfielders will be dealing with the glare. Therefore, I start Pollock, Bellinger and Betts in the outfield. You need your best defensive outfield there for this game. Sorry, Lux is not that yet. All you need to see is how badly he played that line drive to right late in yesterday’s game. Turner, Seager, Turner, and Beaty for his LH bat at first. Barnes catches. Scherzer’s ERA with Barnes catching is much better. And Smith is not a very good off speed hitter. He feasts on fastballs, but Waino is a breaking ball guy. It should be a tight game, so I go with Barnes.

    1. I pretty much agree with your lineup Bear. Hadn’t thought about Barnes for Smith but you’re right, Will has problems with off speed and Max seems to do better with Barnes catching. No way I want Lux in the outfield at 5:00.

      I think it will ultimately come down to Beaty or Albert at first, depending upon how they feel Albert could hit against Waino. I actually think Albert might be better defensively than Beaty but I’ll be OK with whatever Doc decides and then when it backfires I’ll scream that our manager doesn’t know what he’s doing.

      1. Albert knows Waino well and although he crushes lefty’s and has trouble with RH, he actually is hitting pretty well against RH pitchers who throw off speed stuff. So, Dave might go with Tio Albert. I am ok with who ever he throws out there and he might opt for the hall of famer in waiting over his best pinch hitter at this point. Albert could walk into one and launch it a long way. He also has the capability of hitting the ball the opposite direction. I was encouraged by Cody’s hit to left. He went with the pitch instead of trying to pull it. For all the vitriol Cody has received this season, he still had a better year than Milwaukee’s Jackie Bradley Jr. Bradley finished with a .163 BA with 6 HR’s and 29 RBI’s in 387 at bats to Cody’s .165 with 10 HR’s and 39 RBI’s in 315 at bats. Shows what I know, I thought Bradley would be a nice reserve outfield pick up. But I was way off.

  6. Good rationale for starting Bellinger and Barnes especially with Smith in a slump. We need Seager, Pollock and the Turners to stay hot.

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