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Dodgers turn to Greinke in deciding NLDS game vs. Mets

Zack Greinke, who posted a majors-best 1.66 ERA this season, will try to lead the Dodgers into the NL Championship Series.

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Zack Greinke, who posted a majors-best 1.66 ERA this season, will try to lead the Dodgers into the NL Championship Series.

LOS ANGELES — One ace helped the Dodgers stave off elimination against the Mets.

Now their other one gets a chance to extend the playoffs in a winner-take-all Game 5.

Coming off LHP Clayton Kershaw's stellar outing that tied the NL Division Series at 2 on Tuesday night, RHP Zack Greinke takes the mound tonight against New York RHP Jacob deGrom.

DeGrom, the Game 1 winner over Kershaw, will pitch on full rest, just like Game 2 winner Greinke.

The Dodgers are trying to advance to the NL Championship Series for the first time in two years. The Mets are seeking their first playoff series win since 2006, also the last time they were in the postseason.

The winner takes on the Cubs in the NLCS at home.

Fittingly, the Dodgers' season could either be prolonged or end on back-to-back appearances by Kershaw and Greinke, whose arms propelled them to a third straight NL West title and a franchise-record third straight playoff appearance.

"They've given us two guys that stop streaks, save your bullpen, are just day-in, day-out consistent guys," manager Don Mattingly said Wednesday. "You can really count on what you're going to get from them 90-something percent of the time."

With Greinke and deGrom squaring off again, Kershaw says the series is "dead even."

"As good as Zack is and has been the whole year, deGrom has been the same, so there's really no home-field advantage when you're facing a guy like deGrom," he said. ''We saw that in Game 1. He's just very impressive, just very tough to square up.''

Greinke has pitched at least six innings in all 33 starts with a majors-best 1.66 ERA. One of two right-handers on the Dodgers' postseason roster, he has allowed two or fewer runs 27 times.

He came up big in the only other elimination game of his career, winning Game 5 of the 2013 NLCS against St. Louis, which led the series 3-1.

CATCHER HURT: Mattingly said Dodgers C Yasmani Grandal (shoulder) is "50-50" to play tonight. Grandal was banged up down the stretch and aggravated his left shoulder injury during a swing in Game 3 on Monday. A.J. Ellis is likely to start.

HARVEY AVAILABLE: RHP Matt Harvey, who pitched five innings Monday, told Mets manager Terry Collins that he wants to be available for tonight's game. RHP Noah Syndergaard is also expected to be available in relief.

BAT FLIP IRKS FOE: Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista's emphatic bat flip after his seventh-inning homer didn't sit well with Rangers RH reliever Sam Dyson, who served up the tiebreaking blast.

"Jose needs to calm that down, just kind of respect the game a little more," said Dyson, a former Jesuit High standout. "He's a huge role model for the younger generation that's coming up playing this game, and I mean he's doing stuff that kids do in Wiffle Ball games and backyard baseball. It shouldn't be done."

Rays lose top staffer

The Rays lost a key member of their front office Wednesday as player personnel director Matt Arnold was hired by the Brewers as vice president and assistant general manager.

Arnold, 36, had been with the Rays since 2007, working his way up from pro scout and working in all aspects of baseball operations including scouting, contract negotiations, player acquisition and biomechanical studies. He had also spoken with the Marlins about a front office job.

No decision has been made on replacing Arnold, but they are likely to look first internally. Baseball operations president Matt Silverman said it is "difficult to lose talented employees" but they are excited for Arnold, who was promoted to the player personnel job in June.

Times staff writer Marc Topkin contributed to this report.

Dodgers turn to Greinke in deciding NLDS game vs. Mets 10/14/15 [Last modified: Wednesday, October 14, 2015 9:59pm]
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