NLCS: Dodgers remain alive
LOS ANGELES — Adrian Gonzalez hit two home runs, Carl Crawford and A.J. Ellis added one apiece as the Los Angeles Dodgers lived to play another day with a 6-4 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 5 of the National League Championship Series on Wednesday at Dodger Stadium.
St. Louis leads the series three games to two, with Game 6 scheduled for Friday at Busch Stadium.
Gonzalez celebrated his tiebreaking homer for a 3-2 lead in the third inning by placing his hands beside his head and giving the Dodgers’ dugout “Mickey Mouse” ears. Cardinals right-hander Adam Wainwright said Gonzalez did some “Mickey Mouse stuff” on the bases in the fourth inning of Game 3, a 3-0 Los Angeles victory.
Gonzalez finished the Dodgers’ scoring with a bases-empty homer in the eighth inning as Los Angeles collected its first homers of the NLCS.
Crawford hit his fourth homer of the postseason with one out in the fifth inning for a 4-2 lead, and Ellis hit his first playoff homer with one out in the seventh. The Dodgers tied a franchise postseason record for homers in a game, also done in 1977 and 1978.
Gonzalez, who had three of the Dodgers’ nine hits, is 8-for-13 with two homers in his career against St. Louis starter Joe Kelly.
Dodgers starter Zack Greinke retired his final 13 batters. He allowed two runs on six hits in seven innings.
Matt Holliday went 3-for-4 with two doubles and an RBI for St. Louis, and Matt Adams and Matt Carpenter added two hits apiece.
Holliday doubled on a ball Puig appeared to lose in the sun to open the ninth inning and scored on Adams’ single. Jon Jay singled with one out, and Pete Kozma singled home Adams with two outs before Kenley Jansen struck out pinch hitter Adron Chambers to end the game.
The Dodgers are attempting to become the 12th team in major league history to overcome a 3-1 deficit. The Giants did it against the Cardinals in the NLCS last year, although the final two games were in San Francisco.
In the second inning, Gonzalez singled and scored after one-out singles by Puig and Juan Uribe, and Greinke’s two-out single made it 2-0. Uribe broke an 0-for-14 streak with his first hit since a two-run single in the third inning of Game 1.
After failing to score after loading the bases with no outs in the first inning, the Cardinals tied it at 2 in the third.
Carlos Beltran hit an RBI triple and Holliday added a run-scoring doubled, but after an infield single, Greinke got Yadier Molina to ground into a double play to end the inning.
Greinke did not allow another baserunner as the Dodgers rallied against Kelly in a rematch of Game 1 starters, a game the Cardinals won 3-2 in 13 innings.
Brian Wilson pitched a scoreless eighth inning Wednesday before Jansen closed out the game despite allowing two runs.
Kelly gave up four runs on seven hits in five innings.
NOTES: St. Louis is the first team in major league history to have four rookie pitchers make at least four appearances in one postseason.
-- RHP Carlos Martinez (six), RHP Seth Maness (five), RHP Trevor Rosenthal (five) and RHP Kevin Siegrist (four). The Cardinals’ bullpen opened the postseason with an LCS-record 15 1/3 consecutive scoreless innings before Ellis’ home run off RHP Edward Mujica in the seventh inning. ... Dodgers LHP Clayton Kershaw, the NL Cy Young Award favorite, will oppose St. Louis rookie RHP Michael Wacha in Game 6, a rematch of Wacha’s 1-0 victory in Game 2 last Saturday. Kershaw is 1-1 with an 0.47 ERA in three postseason starts this year. Wacha is 2-0 with a 0.64 ERA in two playoff starts ... Dodgers INF/OF Skip Schumaker understands the mountain his team faces, but he was on the other side as a member of the 2012 St. Louis team that could not hold a 3-1 NLCS lead against eventual World Series champion San Francisco. “We have our pitchers lined up, and if St. Louis does beat us, they beat us against our best guys going,” Schumaker said. “We feel confident in who we have against them.”