Friday, October 22, 2021

2021 Post-NLCS Game 5 Thread: Chris Taylor Will Not Go Quietly

Chris Taylor puts the Dodgers ahead for good in the second inning (great photo by Luis Sinco, LAT)


Chris Taylor saved the Dodgers in the 2021 Wild Card Game, winning the game with a walk-off two-run HR. And though none of Taylor's astounding three home runs were a walk-off last night, he definitely punctuated this NLCS Game 5 victory as well, multiple times. With Justin Turner felled by a hamstring in Game 4, and Joe Kelly gone for the series after being removed in the first inning, it was up to one of the remaining Dodgers left standing to step up and carry this team.

Enter Chris Taylor:

Amazing. Having been at Adam Kennedy's three-HR ALCS performance in 2002, and watched Kike Hernandez do the same against the Cubs in 2017, it was awesome to view Taylor going to town for the final game of this series at Dodger Stadium (I watched this game at home). There have been 11 players with three home runs in a postseason game (including teammate Albert Pujols), but Taylor is the first to do it in an elimination game.

Chris Taylor carried us for the first half of this season, cooled off in the later months, and then came alive again for the postseason (despite his baserunning gaffe in Game 1). He now has four HR this 2021 postseason, in which he is batting .364 with a 1.254 OPS. Taylor is a free agent at the end of this season, and I so hope he is back in Dodger Blue.

Not that Taylor was the only Dodger hero in NLCS Game 5. AJ Pollock went 3-for-5 with two HR and 4 RBI of his own; Pollock's eighth-inning, three-run HR was a definitive game-ending smash. Love this picture:

Albert Pujols went 2-for-4 with two runs scored. Trea Turner, elevated to the two spot, went 3-for-4 with a run and a RBI. Will Smith was the only Dodgers position player to go 0-fer, and even Smith made a fine play to throw out Eddie Rosario at second on a stolen base attempt.

That was the Dodgers' seventh straight win in a postseason elimination game. Four of these backs-against-the-wall wins have been against the Braves.

So we head back to Atlanta for a Game 6 on Saturday. But I'm going to just buzz and enjoy this beatdown, right now. Let's cue up Don Henley (and Axl Rose on backup vocals):


QuadSevens said...

Anytime a player can get themselves on a list that includes Babe Ruth, they did something great! CT3 got himself onto two of those lists last night. Aside from the 3 HRs in a playoff game (Babe Ruth did it twice), CT3 and Pollock having multiple HRs in the same playoff game has only happened two other times. Tatis and Myers for SD last year and Ruth and Gehrig in 1932!