Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Cardinals beat Dodgers, take 3-1 lead in NLCS

The Cardinals’ Matt Holliday gets high-fived on his way into the dugout after hitting a mammoth two-run homer in the third.

Getty Images

The Cardinals’ Matt Holliday gets high-fived on his way into the dugout after hitting a mammoth two-run homer in the third.

LOS ANGELES — Thanks to two big swings and some excellent defense, the Cardinals are one win from the World Series.

Just like last year.

Matt Holliday and pinch-hitter Shane Robinson connected for the first home runs of the NL Championship Series, and St. Louis beat the Dodgers 4-2 Tuesday night to take a 3-1 lead in their best-of-seven playoff.

"We can't get ahead of ourselves," Holliday said.

In a series starved for offense, the Cardinals scored as many runs as they did in the first three games combined, when the teams totaled nine.

Game 5 is this afternoon at Dodger Stadium, with Zack Greinke set to start for Los Angeles against Joe Kelly.

St. Louis had a 3-1 lead in last year's NLCS before dropping three straight to the Giants, the eventual World Series champion.

"Hopefully, we can throw some offense together like we were (Tuesday) a little bit and keep some positive thoughts going," manager Mike Matheny said. "When we start talking about where the series is, I think it's a distraction. What we've got to do is play a game."

It was a painful defeat for the Dodgers, in more ways than one. Star shortstop Hanley Ramirez, playing with a broken left rib, left in the middle of the sixth after striking out three times.

"It got worse as we went along," manager Don Mattingly said.

St. Louis third baseman David Freese came out after six innings. He left Monday's game with a cramp in his right calf.

Hitless in 22 at-bats at Dodger Stadium, Holliday sent a two-run shot off Ricky Nolasco an estimated 426 feet to left, capping a three-run third that gave the Cardinals a 3-0 lead.

"That's about as good as I can hit one," said Holliday, who was 0-for-13 in the series before connecting.

"I wasn't really doubting my swing at all. I felt actually really good with my at-bats. Sometimes in this game you don't always get the results that you want even if you feel like you're having good at-bats, so I just wanted to stay with it."

Robinson, a Jesuit High and Florida State product, hit a home run that bounced off the top of the leftfield wall on a 1-and-0 pitch from former Rays reliever J.P. Howell with one out in the seventh, extending the Cardinals' lead to 4-2.

"For a little guy, he's got surprising power," Holliday said. "I mean, honestly, he's got some thump."

Cardinals beat Dodgers, take 3-1 lead in NLCS 10/15/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, October 16, 2013 12:36am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. LSU advances to College World Series finals, awaits Florida or TCU

    College

    OMAHA, Neb. — Caleb Gilbert held No. 1 national seed Oregon State to two hits in 71/3 innings, Michael Papierski homered from both sides of the plate and LSU beat the Beavers 6-1 on Saturday to reach the College World Series finals.

    Beau Jordan celebrates after hitting a home run during a victory over Oregon State, LSU’s second straight win over the No. 1 national seed.
  2. Jones: Bucs need success to get national respect

    Bucs

    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones offers up his Two Cents on the world of sports.

    No respect

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter walks the field during the second day of mandatory minicamp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, June 14, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times
  3. Rays journal: Jumbo Diaz falters after getting within a strike of ending rally

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Saturday's game got away starting with a leadoff walk in the seventh inning by Rays LHP Jose Alvarado, who was brought in exclusively to face Baltimore's lefty-swinging Seth Smith.

    Rays reliever Jumbo Diaz wipes his face as he walks off the mound after the Orioles score four during the seventh inning to give them a 7-3 lead. Diaz was one strike away from working out of the jam before he allowed a two-run double and a two-run homer on back-to-back pitches.
  4. Rookie Jake Faria dissatisfied with performance in Rays' loss to Orioles

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The rookie pitcher walked to his locker Saturday after tossing the fourth quality start in as many tries to begin his career. He held the potent Orioles bats to three runs and for six innings gave his team a chance to win.

    Orioles third baseman Manny Machado tags out the Rays’ Mallex Smith at third after a rundown in the first inning.
  5. Roger Mooney's takeaways from Saturday's Rays-Orioles game

    The Heater

    It was refreshing to see RHP Jacob Faria take the blame after the loss even though he gave the Rays a chance to win. Too often young pitchers are encouraged by what they did and not necessarily the outcome, but Faria, making just his fourth big-league start, came to the Trop to win, didn't, and pointed the finger …