Dodgers blast four HRs, extend NLCS
LOS ANGELES — Accused of “Mickey Mouse stuff” earlier in the series, Adrian Gonzalez took it to a new level Wednesday when he raised his hands to his head to simulate mouse ears after his go-ahead home run in the third inning.
“That just happened,” Gonzalez said. “If you are not having fun in the playoffs, then you don’t deserve to be here.”
Gonzalez hit two of the Dodgers’ four home runs, and right-hander Zack Greinke settled down after some early difficulty in Los Angeles’ 6-4 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 5 of the National League Championship Series.
St. Louis leads the series three games to two, with Game 6 scheduled for Friday at Busch Stadium. If necessary, Game 7 would be Saturday in St. Louis.
Carl Crawford and A.J. Ellis added solo homers for the Dodgers, who were held without a home run while scoring seven runs in the first four games of the series.
Crawford hit his fourth homer of the postseason with one out in the fifth inning for a 4-2 lead, and Ellis hit his first playoff homer with one out in the seventh. The Dodgers tied a franchise postseason record for homers in a game, also done in 1977 and 1978.
Gonzalez finished the Dodgers’ scoring with a bases-empty homer in the eighth inning.
Cardinals right-hander Adam Wainwright said Gonzalez heckled him with some “Mickey Mouse stuff” on the bases after the Dodgers first baseman doubled in the fourth inning of Game 3, a 3-0 Los Angeles victory.
Following Game 5, Gonzalez said, “I’m going to retire (the mouse ears) so we don’t need to talk about that again.”
St. Louis catcher Yadier Molina said, “They got all the right to do whatever they want to.”
Gonzalez, who had three of the Dodgers’ nine hits and scored three times, is 8-for-13 with two homers in his career against St. Louis starter Joe Kelly after his homer in the third inning gave Los Angeles a 3-2 lead.
“There are certain matchups ... you can’t explain it, you just see the ball well,” Gonzalez said.
Greinke, who retired his final 13 batters, allowed two runs on six hits in seven innings.
Matt Holliday went 3-for-4 with two doubles and an RBI for St. Louis, and Matt Adams and Matt Carpenter added two hits apiece.
Holliday doubled down the right field line on a ball right fielder Yasiel Puig appeared to lose in the sun to open the ninth inning, and he scored on Adams’ single.
Jon Jay singled with one out, and Pete Kozma singled home Adams with two outs before Kenley Jansen struck out pinch hitter Adron Chambers with the tying runs on base to end the game.
The Dodgers are attempting to become the 12th team in major league history to overcome a 3-1 postseason deficit. The Giants did it against the Cardinals in the NLCS last year, although the final two games were in San Francisco.
“They were up 3-1 last year and they lost,” Gonzalez said. “We’re hoping to do the same thing.”
In the second inning, Gonzalez singled and scored after one-out singles by Puig and Juan Uribe, and Greinke’s two-out single made it 2-0. Uribe broke an 0-for-14 streak with his first hit since a two-run single in the third inning of Game 1.
The Cardinals tied it at 2 in the third.
Carlos Beltran hit an RBI triple and Holliday added a run-scoring double, but after an infield single, Greinke got Molina to ground into a double play to end the inning.
Greinke did not allow another baserunner as the Dodgers rallied against Kelly in a rematch of Game 1 starters, a game the Cardinals won 3-2 in 13 innings.
“We had a couple opportunities to do something and just couldn’t make it happen,” St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said. “Those usually come back to haunt you, and today they did.”
Molina also grounded into a double play to end the first inning after the Cardinals loaded the bases with no outs.
“Right now I’m frustrated,” Molina said. “I had the chance to help my team and I didn’t come through. You’re going to have bad games.”
Brian Wilson pitched a scoreless eighth inning Wednesday before Jansen closed out the game despite allowing two runs.
Kelly gave up four runs on seven hits in five innings.
NOTES: St. Louis is the first team in major league history to have four rookie pitchers make at least four appearances in one postseason — RHP Carlos Martinez (six), RHP Seth Maness (five), RHP Trevor Rosenthal (five) and RHP Kevin Siegrist (five). The Cardinals’ bullpen opened the postseason with an LCS-record 15 1/3 consecutive scoreless innings before Ellis’ home run off RHP Edward Mujica in the seventh inning. ... Dodgers LHP Clayton Kershaw, the NL Cy Young Award favorite, will oppose Cardinals rookie RHP Michael Wacha in Game 6, a rematch of Wacha’s 1-0 victory in Game 2 last Saturday. Kershaw is 1-1 with an 0.47 ERA in three postseason starts this year. Wacha is 2-0 with a 0.64 ERA in two playoff starts.