The National League had the spotlight on Sunday as they played their respective Game 3s in Washington, DC and St. Louis. Both home teams lost on Sunday however, and now Atlanta and Los Angeles have a chance to clinch their respective series on Monday.
The Cardinals looked ready to take a huge 2-1 series lead and set up a chance to close this thing out at Busch Stadium. Matt Carpenter drove in Marcell Ozuna to give the Cardinals a 1-0 lead in the second inning. Adam Wainwright shut down the Braves over 7 2⁄3 innings, giving up four hits and striking out eight. And then the ninth inning happened.
Carlos Martinez entered the game in the ninth to close out the game after 24 regular season saves. However, after nearly blowing a 7-3 lead in Game 1, he struggled once again. Josh Donaldson led off the ninth with a double. Martinez struck out Nick Markakis and Adeiny Hechavarria before intentionally walking Brian McCann. Dansby Swanson doubled on the first pitch of his at bat to tie up the game. Then, Adam Duvall hit an 0-2 single to plate two more runs. Mark Melancon came on in the bottom of the ninth to lock down the Braves win.
Game 3 has first pitch scheduled for 3:07 p.m. on TBS. Dakota Hudson will start for the Cardinals, while the Braves starter is TBD.
The Nationals surprised some when they decided to start Anibal Sanchez over Max Scherzer. For five innings, it looked like the decision might work. Sanchez struck out nine and gave up one run before giving way to starter Patrick Corbin in the sixth.
Things quickly went south as Corbin gave up six runs in 2⁄3 of an inning and Wander Suero gave up one in his 1⁄3 of an inning. The Dodgers rolled to victory, winning 10-4 and taking a 2-1 series lead. Sanchez rolled twice through the Dodgers lineup, but they finally broke through after he left. Doubles by Russell Martin and Enrique Hernandez, followed by a Justin Turner home run set the Dodgers up for success.
The Nationals loaded the bases while trailing 8-2, and looked like they might make things interesting. They scored a run on a wild pitch, but then a sacrifice fly that plated a run turned into a double play when Howie Kendrick got caught in a rundown. The Nationals cut the lead to 8-4, but could not build on it.
First pitch for Game 3 is set for 6:40 p.m. on TBS. Max Scherzer will take the mound for the Nationals, while Rich Hill will start for the Dodgers.