For the second straight day, we will have a Game 7.
One day after the Astros evened their series against the Rays, the Dodgers followed suit on Saturday with a 3-1 win over the Braves in Game 6 of the National League Championship Series. The win sets up a Game 7 on Sunday, with the winner advancing to the World Series.
Saturday’s win was spearheaded by Walker Buehler, who stymied Atlanta’s offense through six scoreless innings. Buehler scattered seven hits (all singles) and allowed no walks with six strikeouts.
The Dodgers’ offense did all its damage in the first inning. Corey Seager got the scoring started with a solo home run, his sixth homer of the postseason. Justin Turner followed with a homer two pitches later to push the lead to 2-0. Los Angeles scored its third run on an RBI single by Cody Bellinger that drove in Max Muncy, who reached base with a walk.
From there, Braves starting pitcher Max Fried settled down. He allowed at least one base runner in each subsequent inning but consistently evaded trouble, finishing the game with three runs allowed on eight hits and four walks with five strikeouts.
The Braves’ offense also had its chances, but failed to capitalize. Atlanta loaded the bases with no outs in the second inning but was unable to cash in, as Buehler struck out Austin Riley and Nick Markakis before getting Cristian Pache to ground out. The Braves came close to scoring in the fifth inning, but Mookie Betts made a sensational play to rob Marcell Ozuna of what was likely to be an RBI double.
Atlanta got on the board in the seventh on an RBI double by Ronald Acuña that drove in Markakis, who tripled to lead off the inning. Acuña was stranded there, one of eight Braves left on base for the game. Atlanta was 2-for-11 with runners in scoring position.
The Dodgers and Braves will play in the 19th Game 7 in LCS history. The last NLCS to go seven games was in 2018, when the Dodgers beat the Brewers, 5-1. The Dodgers are 2-0 all-time in NLCS Game 7’s, while the Braves are 3-0, winning in 1991, 1992 and 1996.
Since the LCS expanded in 1985, this is the third time that both LCS series will go to seven games, with the others coming in 2003 and 2004.