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Dodgers advance NL Championship Series against the Milwaukee Brewers

Dodgers advance NL Championship Series against the Milwaukee Brewers
Dodgers Manny Machado is congratulated by teammates and coaches after hitting a three-run home run against the Braves in the 7th inning in Game 4 of the NLDS at SunTrust Park in Atlanta. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

For the fourth time in six years, the Dodgers successfully completed the first big postseason step toward fulfilling the dreams of Los Angeles, this time defeating the Atlanta Braves, 6-2, at SunTrust Park to capture the National League Division Series three games to one.

It’s the first time in franchise history they have advanced to the National League Championship Series for three consecutive seasons. It’s their third postgame party in 10 days. They’ve been there. They’ve done that. Now it’s time for the real work.

In a pinch

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Dodgers David Freese hits a two-run single and the lead against the Braves in the 6th inning in Game 4 of the NLDS. Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times

No stranger to the October stage, David Freese delivered a sixth-inning single that drove in the equalizing and go-ahead runs in Game 4 of the National League Division Series. The 6-2 victory over the Atlanta Braves on Monday secured a series victory, as well as a place in the NL Championship Series against the Milwaukee Brewers.

Going deep

Dodgers Manny Machado flexes after hitting a three-run home run against the Braves in the 7th inning in Game 4 of the NLDS. Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times

Manny Machado jumped on a 95-mph fastball, launching a three-run homer which solidified the Dodgers’ capture of the National League Division Series over the Braves.

The Dodgers now face the bullpen-strong and power-hitting Brewers, who will have home-field advantage. The series start Friday.

Dodgers centerfielder Cody Bellinger can't make the catch on a single by Braves Freddie Freeman in the 1st inning in Game 4 of the NLDS. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)
Dodgers Justin Turner fields a sacrafice bunt by Braves hitter Ender Inciarte as pitcher Rich Hill tries to help in the 4th inning in Game 4 of the NLDS. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)
Dodgers catcher Yasmani Grandal catches a foul ball off the bat of Braves Tyler Flowers in the 5th inning in Game 4 of the NLDS. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)
Braves shortstop Charlie Culberson celebrates after tagging out Dodgers Joc Pederson while trying to stretch a single into a double in the 8th inning in Game 4 of the NLDS. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)
Clockwise from top left; Cody Bellinger can't make the catch on a single by Braves Freddie Freeman in the 1st inning in Game 4; Justin Turner fields a sacrafice bunt by Braves hitter Ender Inciarte as pitcher Rich Hill tries to help in the 4th inning; Braves shortstop Charlie Culberson celebrates after tagging out Dodgers Joc Pederson in the 8th inning; Catcher Yasmani Grandal catches a foul ball off the bat of Braves Tyler Flowers in the 5th inning. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)
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Dodgers players and coaches take a team photo after eliminating the Braves in Game 4 of the NLDS. Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times

NLDS Game 3 | Braves 6 Dodgers 5

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Dodgers outfielder Chris Taylor can only watch as Ronald Acuna Jr. hits a grand slam in the 2nd inning in Game 3 of the NLDS at SunTrust Park in Atlanta. Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times

The Dodgers gathered to lick their wounds after a 6-5 defeat to Atlanta in Game 3 of the National League Division Series cost them a chance for a sweep.

And so the Dodgers were forced to spend another day in Georgia, unable to secure a spot against Milwaukee in the National League Championship Series. Rich Hill will start Game 4 on Monday afternoon, facing Braves starter Mike Foltynewicz, who lasted only two innings in Game 1.

The hit

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Ronald Acuna Jr. hits a grand slam against the Dodgers inthe 2nd inning in Game 3 of the NLDS at SunTrust Park in Atlanta. Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times

Inside the maelstrom of chanting fans, Dodgers pitcher Walker Buehler searched for both his release point and an escape route. Neither would appear against fellow rookie sensation Ronald Acuna. Buehler stuck with the fastball at 3-1. Acuna crushed the baseball into the left-field seats to become the youngest player in postseason history to hit a grand slam.

Dodgers Matt Kemp is tagged out by Braves catcher Kurt Suzuki in the 6th inning in Game 3 of the NLDS. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)
Dodgers Cody Bellinger makes an acrobatic catch off the bat of Braves Ozzie Albies inthe 4th inning in Game 3 of the NLDS. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)
Dodgers reliever Alex Wood sits in the dugout after giving up the go-ahead run to the Braves in the 6th inning in Game 3 of the NLDS. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)
Dodgers Brian Dozier walks off the field after striking out against the Braves with two men on base to end Game 3 of the NLDS . (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)
Clockwise from top left; Dodgers Matt Kemp is tagged out by Braves catcher Kurt Suzuki in the 6th inning in Game 3 of the NLDS; Dodgers Cody Bellinger makes an acrobatic catch off the bat of Braves Ozzie Albies inthe 4th inning; Dodgers Brian Dozier walks off the field after striking out to end the game; Dodgers reliever Alex Wood sits in the dugout after giving up the go-ahead run to the Braves. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

NLDS Game 2 | Dodgers 3 Braves 0

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Dodgers Manny Machado hits a two-run home run against the Braves in the 1st inning in Game 2 of the NLDS at Dodger Stadium Friday. Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times

Mannywood

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Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times

Manny Machado is congratulated in the dugout after hitting a first inning two-run homer off Braves starter Anibel Sanchez in game two of the NLDS.

This version of Mannywood is more understated than the original by several orders of magnitude. The current protagonist isn't cracking jokes about appearing on Spanish-language soap operas. He certainly isn't renaming this city after himself within a few months of his arrival.

What Manny Machado does share with his predecessor is his ability to change the game with a single stroke of his Rawlings bat.

Clayton Kershaw reacts while battling Braves hitter Charlie Culberson in the eighth inning in Game 2 of the NLDS. Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times

Kept on the bench for Game 1, Dodger pitcher Clayton Kershaw responded with the lengthiest playoff outing of his career. Across eight scoreless innings, he permitted two hits. He struck out only three, but preyed on the eagerness of the Braves. He finished at-bats in expedient fashion, needing only 85 pitches, as the Dodgers shot out the Atlanta Braves 3-0 in Game 2 of the NLDS.

Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen stretches between pitches as he closes out a 3-0 win over the Braves in Game 2 of the NLDS. (Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)
Dodgers Yasiel Puig hugs Braves Charlie Culberson after being caught stealing in the 6th inning. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times)
Pitcher Clayton Kershaw can't get a hand on an infield hit by Atlanta Braves center fielder Ender Inciarte. (Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)
Top, Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen stretches between pitches as he closes out a 3-0 win over the Braves in Game 2 of the NLDS. Left, Dodgers Yasiel Puig hugs Braves Charlie Culberson after being caught stealing in the 6th inning. Right, Pitcher Clayton Kershaw can't get a hand on an infield hit by Atlanta Braves center fielder Ender Inciarte. (Robert Gauthier / Wally Skalij / Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)

NLDS Game 1 | Dodgers 6 Braves 0

Dodgers left fielder Joc Pederson hits a solo homer off Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Mike Foltynewicz in the first inning of Game 1 of the NLDS at Dodger Stadium. (Gina Ferazzi/Los AngelesTimes)
Dodgers Joc Pederson celebrates with third base coach Chris Woodward after hitting a solo home run against the Braves in the 1st inning in Game 1 of the NLDS. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times)
Dodgers fans Art Ortiz, left, of El Monte, and Justin Barca, right, of Sierra Madre, cheer on the Dodgers as they play the Atlanta Braves in the first game of the NLDS at Dodger Stadium. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Top, Dodgers left fielder Joc Pederson hits a solo homer off Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Mike Foltynewicz in the first inning of Game 1 of the NLDS at Dodger Stadium. Left, Joc Pederson celebrates with third base coach Chris Woodward. Right, Art Ortiz, left, and Justin Barca cheer on the Dodgers. (Gina Ferazzi/Wally Skalij/Allen J. Schaben/Los AngelesTimes)

Boom! Eleven minutes into the game, Joc Pederson drives a leadoff home run over the right-center field fence.

Crash! One inning later, Max Muncy gets funky with a three-run homer that disappears into the right-field pavilion.

The Ryu factor

Dodgers starting pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu. (Gina Ferazzi/Los Angeles Times)
A member of the Blue Crew waves a large Dodgers flag on top of the Dodgers dugout. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Left, Dodgers starting pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu. Right, member of the Blue Crew waves a large Dodgers flag on top of the Dodgers dugout. (Gina Ferazzi / Allen J. Schaben / Los AngelesTimes)

Tapped as the starting pitcher for Game 1 of the NLDS, Hyun-Jin Ryu didn’t disappoint. Ryu pitched seven shoutout innings Thursday in the Dodgers’ 6-0 victory over the Atlanta Braves in Game 1 of their National League Division Series.

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Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman tumbles into the front row in pursuit of a fourth inning foul ball. Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times

The depth of the Dodgers overwhelmed the Braves and their starting pitcher anesthetized Atlanta’s bats. Ryu, who started in place of Clayton Kershaw, yielded four singles and struck out eight. He did not permit a Brave to stand on third base.

Blue Haven

Former Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda talks with Roz Wyman before the Dodgers game. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Dodgers infielder Cody Bellinger signs autographs for fans prior to Game 1 of the NLDS at Dodger Stadium. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Dodgers fans cheer on the team during the game. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Roger "The Dodger" Cunard, who's been a fan since he was seven years-old, shows his Dodgers spirit. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Clockwise from top left; Former Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda talks with Roz Wyman before the Dodgers game; Dodgers infielder Cody Bellinger signs autographs for fans prior to Game 1 of the NLDS; Roger "The Dodger" Cunard, who's been a fan since he was seven years-old, shows his Dodgers spirit; Dodgers fans cheer on the team during the game. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

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Max Muncy celebrates with Yasiel Puig after homering in the second inningin off Braves starter Mike Foltynewicz in Game 1 of the NLDS. Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times
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Top Deck fans cheer as Dodgers Joc Pederson leads off with a home run to centerfield in Game 1 of the NLDS. Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times
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