There was the previous Dodgers nearer, blowing a preserve towards his aged staff.
There was the Braves one particular-time nearer, also faltering versus his former staff in a sport at Truist Park on Sunday that dragged deep into the night.
And, of study course, there was the extended-time Braves hero, burning his aged club at the finish of an emotional reunion weekend back again in this city.
In the stop, neither Kenley Jansen nor Craig Kimbrel nor even Freddie Freeman have been section of the sequence that in the long run determined the Dodgers’ 5-3 additional-innings gain — with Chris Taylor and Trea Turner rather providing the go-forward RBIs to help the Dodgers get two out of 3 game titles in opposition to their Countrywide League nemesis.
It was the Dodgers’ 1st earn in added innings just after 5 losses.
But in a series that was all about Freeman’s return to Atlanta, and incredibly nicely may have served as a preview of a 3rd straight postseason assembly involving the groups this fall, it was far too fitting that all 3 familiar faces showcased prominently in receiving the activity to 11 innings.
“We all know that these are two great teams,” Freeman said, “that have a true great chance of meeting yet again.”
To begin with, it looked as if Sunday’s collection finale would not even access the bottom of the ninth.
Inspite of a good 5 2/3-inning, a single-operate begin from Tony Gonsolin — who reclaimed the most effective Era in the majors at 1.58 after requalifying with the league’s least-innings threshold — the Dodgers’ offense was kept quiet for 8 innings.
Braves starter Spencer Strider shut them out for the 1st 6. A few Braves relievers merged for scoreless innings in the seventh and eighth.
Moving into the ninth, the Dodgers were being hitless in 7 at-bats with runners in scoring position.
And the result seemed so specific, that as he walked off the field a 50 percent-inning before, Freeman experienced tears in his eyes — seemingly believing his emotional homecoming was about to occur to an conclude.
“I’m emotionally drained,” Freeman stated. “It exceeded all my expectations.”
It lasted a little for a longer time than he was anticipating much too.
In lookup of his next straight help save from the Dodgers in the ninth, Jansen recorded two rapid strikeouts before obtaining into trouble.
Gavin Lux strike a line-push single to correct. Taylor lined a base strike to remaining, then stole second.
Then, with the Dodgers (45-26) down to their ultimate strike, Trayce Thompson — who had been included to the lineup late after Zach McKinstry was scratched since of neck stiffness — hit a floater that just grazed the top rated of Matt Olson’s glove at very first foundation, falling securely in shallow appropriate industry to rating the two operates.
“[I had] no clue,” Thompson stated of the hit, which he originally considered had been fouled off, seeking all over earlier mentioned him as the ball drifted the other way. “Was just seeking to go up there and compete. Satisfied it dropped for certain.”
Freeman just about delivered a storybook ending in the 10th, hitting a leadoff RBI double down the line that gave his new group a 3-2 lead though silencing his outdated admirers, who welcomed him to the plate at the start of the match with a loud ovation in advance of booing him in key moments the relaxation of the night.
“Getting booed at Truist Park, I did not see that 1 coming at all in my lifestyle,” claimed Freeman, who went 4 for 12 in the collection.
“But it’s Ok. They are wonderful baseball fans. They treatment about their crew. So I was type of expecting that at some point.”
Kimbrel, one more former Braves star, could not safeguard the lead. Two pitches into the base of the 10th, Olson lined a base strike to heart that knotted the score once more. William Contreras came close to going for walks it off later on in the inning but viewed a deep fly ball to middle die at the warning keep track of for the ultimate out.
That saved the activity alive for Taylor and Turner in the 11th. Taylor strike an RBI double that was deflected alongside the foul line by Austin Riley at 3rd foundation. Turner tacked on an insurance run with a foundation hit up the middle.
In the base of the 11th, Brusdar Graterol was summoned and converted his initial job common-period help you save, touching 102.5 mph with his fastball irrespective of pitching against the Braves (42-32) for a third straight day.
“That was quite the game, fairly the series,” supervisor Dave Roberts claimed. “The way they deployed pitching, we deployed pitching and just type of each individual play felt like a postseason match, it definitely did.”
It might not be the past time it feels that way amongst the Dodgers and Braves this calendar year, possibly.
“That crew, [there’s] a good chance they’re going to be there at the close of the 12 months,” Taylor claimed. “To grind one particular out and earn just one that way, multiple fellas contributing, kind of chipping away, that was a good staff get for us.”