Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw was his near perfect self, though a lone mistake proved to be fatal as a fifth inning sacrifice fly ended up becoming the game deciding run.
After Cardinals third baseman David Freese doubled to lead off the bottom of the fifth inning, he moved to third base on a passed ball moments later. Kershaw was hopeful to get out of the jam, striking out slugger Matt Adams for the innings first out, though the next batter, Jon Jay was not be denied as he sent a medium deep fly ball to left field where Carl Crawford recorded the innings second out. Crawford did make an attempt to throw home, though, the lob was quite wide and Freese scored with relative ease.
That one run would be enough for rookie starter Michael Wacha, who while not as dominating as he was in his near no-hit bid against the Pittsburgh Pirates in the NLDS, was still relatively flawless, throwing 6.2 innings of no-run ball. The 23-year-old did give up five hits and a walk, though struck out eight and tightroped out of the few jams he found himself in.
Helping Wacha preserve the win was the Cardinals bullpen who again, much like they did in Game 1, pitched wonderfully en route to the victory.
The St. Louis win puts heat on Los Angeles, who will now return home for Game 3, Game 4 and Game 5. At minimum, the Cardinals’ 2-0 series lead has guaranteed a return to St. Louis, if needed, as the Dodgers will be forced to win four of the next five to advance to the World Series.
The NLCS will have a scheduled off day on Sunday before the action starts back up in California, Monday evening.