Brewers hold off Manny, Dodgers
Any Yankees fans who were paying attention to Game 1 of the NLCS got a nice glimpse of clutch postseason hitting from Manny Machado.
It's something the Bombers were sorely missing in their ALDS series defeat to the Red Sox, and with Didi Gregorius now down due to Tommy John surgery, don't be surprised if the Yankees do go after Machado in free agency.
But the Dodgers shortstop's two hits and three RBI were ultimately not enough for Los Angeles in a 6-5 loss to the Brewers in the opener of this series Friday night.
Clayton Kershaw was hit hard in the shortest start of his spotty playoff career, and the sloppy Los Angeles Dodgers committed four errors, including two by catcher Yasmani Grandal in Milwaukee's two-run third. But another playoff flop for its ace left-hander might be its biggest concern as it tries to cool off streaking Milwaukee.
Game 2 is Saturday afternoon at Miller Park.
Kershaw holds the team records for playoff wins (eight), starts (21), innings (133) and strikeouts (144), but is just 8-8 with a 4.26 ERA in 26 career postseason appearances. The Dodgers dropped to 13-13 when the three-time NL Cy Young Award winner takes the mound in the playoffs.
The 30-year-old Kershaw quieted some of those October questions when the Dodgers won the NL pennant last year for the first time since 1988, going 3-0 with a 3.82 ERA in six appearances. He pitched six sparkling innings in the NLCS-clinching victory at Wrigley Field against the Cubs, and worked four scoreless innings in relief in Los Angeles' Game 7 loss to Houston in the World Series.
After he was passed over for Los Angeles' Game 1 start in the NL Division Series this year, the 2014 NL MVP responded with eight innings of two-hit ball in a 3-0 victory over Atlanta.
The victory against the Baby Braves was one of his best playoff performances. The loss against the Brewers was one of his worst.
The night started to get away from Kershaw and the Dodgers when pitcher Brandon Woodruff led off the third inning with a massive drive to right-center, becoming the third reliever in major league history to homer in a postseason game.
Kershaw glanced back with an incredulous look as Woodruff's ball soared over the wall, tying it at 1 and sending a charge through the sellout crowd of 43,615.
Brewers celebrate Friday’s win and their1-0 lead in ALCS.