MLB Playoffs: Dodgers rough up Atlanta, lead series 2-1
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Carl Crawford hit a three-run homer, Juan Uribe added a two-run shot and the Los Angeles Dodgers routed the Atlanta Braves 13-6 on Sunday night for a 2-1 lead in their best-of-five NL division series.
Hanley Ramirez and Yasiel Puig each had three hits and scored three times on a big night at the plate for the Dodgers, who matched a franchise record for runs in a postseason game. Brooklyn beat the New York Yankees 13-8 in Game 2 of the 1956 World Series.
Los Angeles can advance to the NL championship series with a victory at home in Game 4 on Monday night. Ricky Nolasco pitches for manager Don Mattingly’s Dodgers against veteran Freddy Garcia.
Crawford made the play of the game when he tumbled head over heels at the low retaining wall in left field and onto his head to catch a foul ball in the eighth. The speedy leadoff man also scored three times, including once in the eighth when the Dodgers made it 13-4.
Vogt cherishes surprise hero role
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Stephen Vogt triumphantly raised his right arm as he took off for first and did it again with a celebratory whipped cream pie covering his face. Then, once more for the cheering crowd as he left the field following another improbable Oakland walkoff win.
No doubt Vogt will cherish that moment. Thanks to him and fellow rookie Sonny Gray, the Athletics headed to Detroit tied with the Tigers at one win apiece in their best-of-five AL division series after Vogt’s winning hit in a 1-0 victory Saturday night.
“It’s a crazy feeling,” a tired Vogt said Sunday in Detroit following an overnight flight. “Haven’t really processed what happened last night. It’s been a whirlwind. It’s been a crazy, crazy few hours, I suppose.”
Make that a crazy six months.
This spring, the catcher sat for six days in Durham, N.C., wondering about his baseball future. He didn’t make the Rays’ opening-day roster and figured to start the season there at Triple-A.
A pennant race, let alone playoffs, were never even a thought.
“Just sitting and waiting,” Vogt recalled.
Fast forward to October, and he’s a playoff star.
Vogt left the Tampa Bay organization for the Bay Area on April 5, traded back home to his native California, only a couple of hours from where he grew up and still lives in Visalia.
“Going into this season, I told myself I was obviously going to be with Tampa and battling for playing time up there and in Durham, playing my three positions, moving around and hopefully hit well enough to get a call up,” Vogt said.
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Evan Longoria woke up feeling much better about Tampa Bay’s chances of rebounding against the Boston Red Sox.
Not that it will be easy to overcome a 2-0 deficit in the best-of-5 AL division series matchup that resumes tonight at Tropicana Field. But to have any chance of succeeding, the Rays star said players can’t dwell on being on the brink of elimination yet again.
It took winning three consecutive elimination games just to get into the division series. And now, it will take three more to beat Red Sox and reach the league championship series against Oakland or Detroit.
“I don’t think we let our guard down at all. I think we just got outplayed,” Longoria said after an optional team workout Sunday.
“They swung the bats better, they pitched better,” the three-time All-Star added. “At some point you’ve got to be able to admit that and turn the page and go to the next day.”
Alex Cobb, who beat Cleveland last Wednesday in the AL wild-card game, will carry the Rays’ hopes to the mound in Game 3. Right-hander Clay Buchholz will start for the Red Sox.