Dodgers Dugout: The stress was worth it

Dodgers celebrate as Chris Taylor approaches home plate
(Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)

Hi, and welcome to another edition of Dodgers Dugout. My name is Houston Mitchell, and that was as stressful a game as I have watched in a long time. I don’t think not many people expected Chris Taylor to hit a game-winning homer in the bottom of the ninth for a 3-1 victory.

—They should use that game to check the heart rate of astronauts-in-training.

Justin Turner, with a key homer, remains one of the steadiest postseason players in Dodger history.

—You have to hand it to Cody Bellinger. He reached base three times and stole two bases. He could have given up during such a grueling, terrible, no good, very bad season, but he kept going and was a big part of the wild-card victory.


—And what about Kenley Jansen? After those two losses against the Giants mid-season, we all wanted him demoted. But he shut down the Cardinals in the ninth and was one of the top closers in baseball the last two months.

—And Chris Taylor? Eight for his last 73 and he wins the game?

—The only way the game could have ended better was if Albert Pujols had hit the game-winning homer.

—I belong to the San Francisco Giants e-mail group. About 20 seconds after the game ended, they sent out an email to all their followers with the subject line “Beat LA”.

—Every move Dave Roberts made turned out to be the right one. There was a lot of concern when he removed Max Scherzer, but Joe Kelly did his job beautifully.

—The Dodger bullpen gave up two hits and one walk in 4.2 innings. “They have been our backbone all year long,” third baseman Justin Turner said. “For them to go out and give us four-plus shutout innings and give the offense a chance to come up and take a big swing, you can’t say enough about those guys.”

—Did TBS forget to bring a speed gun to the game?

—Also, can Ron Darling stop talking for a couple of seconds?

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—If you want to go to Dodger Stadium to watch NLDS Games 1 and 2 (which are in San Francisco), you can. The Dodgers will host fans at Dodger Stadium for viewing parties in the centerfield plaza. Entertainment will include pitching and batting cages and a dugout augmented reality experience presented. Tickets are $70 and include parking and a $20 food and beverage credit. More information can be found at

—We will discuss the NLDS matchup in depth in Friday’s newsletter.

—Which is good, because we all need a day to recover from Wednesday’s game.

—Game 1 Friday will be at 6:30 p.m. PDT and will be televised on TBS and will be on ESPN radio.

In case you missed it

Chris Taylor’s walk-off homer lifts Dodgers over Cardinals in NL wild-card game

Plaschke: The Shot Heard Round the Ravine: Dodgers top Cardinals in epic wild-card walkoff

Hernández: Dodgers pitcher Max Scherzer’s latest shaky start is source of concern

Repeat L.A.? Dodgers spark hope that another ring is possible

Winner takes all: Photos of the NL Wildcard between the Dodgers and Cardinals

And finally

Chris Taylor‘s game-winning homer. Watch and listen here.

Until next time...

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