Diamondbacks jump all over another Dodgers starter and beat LA 4-2 for a 2-0 lead in NLDS

Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Zac Gallen (23) reacts after striking out Los Angeles Dodgers' Freddie Freeman during the fifth inning in Game 2 of a baseball NL Division Series, Monday, Oct. 9, 2023, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

LOS ANGELES — Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and the surprising Arizona Diamondbacks made quick work of another Dodgers starter, beating Los Angeles 4-2 on Monday night behind Zac Gallen for a 2-0 lead in their NL Division Series.

The young Diamondbacks, who earned the final National League wild card despite losing their last four regular-season games, improved to 4-0 in these playoffs — all on the road against division winners.


They’ll try for a stunning sweep of the 100-win Dodgers when the best-of-five series shifts to Arizona for Game 3 on Wednesday.

Gallen allowed two runs over 5 1/3 innings for his second win of the postseason. Gurriel laced an RBI single to cap a three-run first, and the Diamondbacks chased rookie starter Bobby Miller in the second.

The early outburst came two nights after Los Angeles ace Clayton Kershaw was tagged for six runs while getting only one out during Arizona’s 11-2 rout in Game 1.

Gurriel added a solo homer in the sixth to make it 4-1. Paul Sewald pitched a perfect ninth for his third save of the postseason, aided by a nice catch from Gurriel in left field.

Gallen retired nine in a row during one stretch in his second career postseason start. The 17-game winner gave up five hits, struck out four and walked two.

Arizona’s hitters weren’t intimidated by Miller’s 100 mph heat in his playoff debut. They loaded the bases with nobody out and got a sacrifice fly from Christian Walker and an RBI groundout from Gabriel Moreno before Gurriel’s two-out single made it 3-0.

Kershaw and Miller worked a combined two innings and gave up nine earned runs. Miller allowed four hits, struck out one and walked two in 1 2/3 innings before manager Dave Roberts had seen enough and went to the bullpen.

The Dodgers have lost five straight postseason games dating to Game 2 of last year’s NLDS against San Diego.

Once again, the NL West champion Dodgers got little production from the top of their lineup. Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman, two of the team’s four 100-RBI players, were a combined 1 for 13 with three walks and a strikeout in the first two games of the series.

Los Angeles went 2 for 12 with runners in scoring position and stranded 13 overall.

Despite having the sellout crowd behind him from his first pitch, Miller issued a leadoff walk to Corbin Carroll. Ketel Marte reached on a bunt single and Tommy Pham singled to load the bases.

James Outman crashed into the center-field wall making a leaping catch of Walker’s sacrifice fly that scored Carroll for a 1-0 lead. Outman bobbled a catch in the first inning of Game 1 that contributed to Kershaw’s six-run inning before the three-time Cy Young Award winner was yanked. After Pham stole second, Arizona added two more runs on Moreno’s RBI groundout to shortstop and Gurriel’s RBI single to center. Miller had two-strike counts on seven hitters and retired only three of them. He needed 32 pitches to get out of the first after visits by catcher Will Smith and pitching coach Mark Prior. J.D. Martinez hit a solo homer in the fourth that pulled the Dodgers to 3-1. They had runners at the corners in the fifth, but with the crowd chanting “Freddie! Freddie!,” Freeman took a called third strike to end the inning.

The Dodgers chased Gallen with back-to-back singles by Max Muncy and Martinez in the sixth. Andrew Saalfrank, a September callup, walked pinch-hitter Chris Taylor to load the bases.

Pinch-hitter Kiké Hernández bounced the ball over the mound and second baseman Marte made a diving stop as Muncy scored to make it 4-2. Outman struck out and pinch-hitter Kolten Wong grounded out against side-armer Ryan Thompson with the bases loaded to end the inning. Betts reached on a fielding error by Thompson leading off the seventh. Freeman came to the plate as the potential tying run. He fouled a ball off his right knee before hitting into a double play, and Smith ended the inning by taking a called third strike.

Digging the long ball

Arizona has homered in 15 straight postseason games dating to Game 3 of the 2007 NL Championship Series against Colorado, tied for the second-longest streak in playoff history.

Up next

Diamondbacks rookie RHP Brandon Pfaadt is scheduled to start Game 3. The Dodgers will go with RHP Lance Lynn. He gave up a major league-leading 44 homers during the season, when he had a 7-2 record and a 4.36 ERA after joining the Dodgers before the Aug. 1 trade deadline.

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