The Los Angeles Dodgers got a thrilling win over the St. Louis Cardinals in the 2021 NL Wild Card Game.
Most folks expected the game to be a pitchers’ duel, and that’s exactly what we got, as just four total runs were scored.
The Dodgers looked like they were in trouble at certain points, but they were ultimately able to escape with a win and end the Cardinals’ season in the process.
Next up for the Dodgers is a date with the San Francisco Giants in the NLDS.
But before we move on, let’s talk about L.A.’s exciting night.
A couple of players really rose to the occasion for the Dodgers.
2. Justin Turner
Justin Turner only had one hit in the Wild Card Game, but he made it count.
In the fourth inning, the Dodgers were trailing 1-0.
Then, on a 2-2 breaking ball, Turner blasted a home run to the left-field corner.
— Blake Harris (@BlakeHarrisTBLA) October 7, 2021
Turner’s bomb was the lone run that Adam Wainwright allowed during his outing.
The home run was L.A.’s second most valuable play of the night according to WPA (win probability added).
Turner’s postseason legacy is one of the greatest in Dodgers history.
The 36-year-old has a career slash line of .294/.390/.905 over 73 playoff games.
He also has 13 home runs, 19 doubles, and a triple.
And to top it all off, he has an NLCS MVP award (2017) and World Series title (2020) to his credit.
The moment simply never gets too big for the veteran, and his MLB career will likely be remembered by his playoff success.
1. Chris Taylor
Of course, Chris Taylor was the MVP of the night.
His walk-off blast in the bottom of the ninth gave the Dodgers a 3-1 victory.
CHRIS TAYLOR WALKS IT OFF FOR THE DODGERS
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) October 7, 2021
To state the obvious, Taylor’s home run had the highest win probability added out of any play last night.
We just talked about how Turner has a great postseason legacy, but Taylor is working on a nice one of his own.
He, too, has both an NLCS MVP award and World Series title to his credit.
In fact, Turner and Taylor earned NLCS MVP award honors in the same series.
They were named co-MVPs of the 2017 NLCS.
Taylor’s postseason track record isn’t quite as impressive as Turner’s, but it’s still solid.
He has a career OPS of .782 in the playoffs.
He’ll look to increase that number as the 2021 postseason continues.
As exciting as last night was for the Dodgers, they don’t have much time to celebrate.
L.A.’s matchup with the Giants in the NLDS will get underway on Friday.
It’ll be a battle of the two best teams in baseball, and on paper, it’s arguably the best LDS matchup in MLB history.
It’s anyone’s guess as to which team is going to advance to the NLCS.
The Dodgers are more talented, but the Giants were able to withstand L.A.’s division push all year long.
There’s something to be said about that.
We’ll get our questions answered soon enough.
October baseball is here, and the playoffs are heating up.