Diamondbacks Stun Dodgers in NLDS Sweep, Advance to NLCS

Diamondbacks players celebrating their Division Series sweep of the Dodgers
(Photo by Evan Thompson/Sport Relay)

Diamondbacks 4, Dodgers 2

PHOENIX, Oct. 11 — There was another pool party at Chase Field Wednesday night. It was one of jubilation. The mighty Los Angeles Dodgers, longtime tormentors of the Arizona Diamondbacks, had fallen in yet another early October exit, thanks to a 4–2 victory by the home nine. Third-inning home runs by Geraldo Perdomo, Ketel Marte, Christian Walker, and Gabriel Moreno propelled the Diamondbacks to victory, sweeping the longtime NL West power out of the playoffs in dominant fashion. Not once in the three games had the Diamondbacks trailed. In fact, they held the lead in 25 of the 27 innings. Dodgers right fielder Mookie Betts and first baseman Freddie Freeman, superstars on Hall-of-Fame career trajectories, combined to go 1-for-21 in the series with three walks and four strikeouts. The lone hit from the pair was an infield single by Freeman in the bottom of the first inning of Game Two.

Dodgers starting pitchers Bobby Miller, Lance Lynn, and Clayton Kershaw — himself a future Hall of Famer — were disastrous, combining for 19 runs on 16 hits, three walks, and five homers. Lynn, the Game Three starter, gave up the quartet of clouts Wednesday night. He lasted 2 2/3 innings, allowing two other hits besides the homers, walking none and striking out one.

Diamondbacks rookie starting pitcher Brandon Pfaadt put in one of his strongest outings of the season, despite having a short leash. In 4 1/3 innings, he allowed no runs on two hits while striking out two. Lefty Joe Mantiply relieved him, allowing no baserunners in 1 1/3 innings while fanning one.

The Managers Speak

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts was gracious in defeat, telling reporters before answering the first postgame question, “I want to congratulate Torey (Lovullo, the Diamondbacks manager), Mike (Hazen, the general manager), the entire Diamondbacks organization. Those guys — Torey had those guys ready to play.”

A beaming Lovullo spoke afterwards, nearly gushing as he answered questions. “There’s a lot of emotion inside of our clubhouse, inside of each body,” he declared. “And I’m not exempt from that.” He was also gracious toward his opponent, saying, “The LA Dodgers have been an unbelievable team for the past, I don’t know, X-plus-one years. And they’re the team that we beat to advance. It feels just a little more special because we know how hard we’ve been working to make this day happen.”

Trading Zeroes Early

The Diamondbacks notched the first hit of the game for either team in the bottom of the second. Left fielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr. lined a two-out single to center and advanced to second on a single to center by center fielder Alek Thomas. That brought up third baseman Evan Longoria, who struck out to end the inning.

The Dodgers entered the hit column in the third on a single to left by Kiké Hernandez. Up came former Diamondback David Peralta, greeted by a hearty chorus of boos. He grounded the first pitch to second baseman Ketel Marte, who rolled it into a 4–6–3 double play. A Miguel Rojas groundout to his counterpart at short ended the frame.

Diamondbacks Set Record, Chase Another Dodgers Starter Early

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The bottom of the third saw the Diamondbacks take the lead, doing so in a way no one has ever seen. Shortstop Geraldo Perdomo lined a leadoff homer into the right-field seats. After a grounder to second by center fielder Corbin Carroll, second baseman Ketel Marte blasted a tape-measure homer to right, making the score 2–0. A grounder to second by designated hitter Tommy Pham followed, bringing up first baseman Christian Walker with two outs. On the fifth pitch, Lynn hung a cutter right down the middle. Walker made him pay, blasting a 113-mph drive 395 feet into the left-field seats.

It was now 3–0, and Caleb Ferguson was hastily getting loose in the Dodgers’ bullpen. Up came catcher Gabriel Moreno. The first two pitches missed high and tight before Moreno took the third pitch for a strike. He swung at the fourth pitch, a fastball right down the middle, slicing it down the right-field line. It left the park near the pole. Right field umpire Gabe Morales signaled home run, giving the Diamondbacks a postseason first: four home runs in an inning.

Except the umpiring crew huddled up. After a discussion, the call came in. Foul ball. Replays confirmed it, putting Moreno back in the batter’s box with a 2–2 count.

No matter. Lynn hung a slider on the next pitch, landing the meatball in the heart of the plate. Moreno crushed it to left-center, a no-doubt home run to make history after all. A grinning Lovullo said incredulously, drawing light chuckles from the reporters present, “It was almost unbelievable, right? Who hits a home run foul and on the next pitch hits a home run fair? Never happens. You usually strikeout. Goes all the way back to Little League. It happens every time.”

A Prediction

Reliever Kevin Ginkel, in a way, called Moreno’s homer. Ginkel excitedly told the story postgame in the clubhouse. “With Moreno’s foul ball, as everyone got excited and thought it was a homer, (but it was) ruled a foul ball, I’m like, ‘Man, if he gets another one here, this place is gonna go bananas.’ I said (it) to one of our pitchers. Next pitch, it’s a homer. I was like, (opens eyes bigger, raises pitch of voice) ‘Ohhhhhhh myyyyyyyy gawwwwwwwwwwwd!’ The place went nuts! I couldn’t believe it.”

Dodgers Cut Lead in Half

The score held at 4–0 until the top of the seventh. Reliever Ryan Thompson, who had allowed a run in one of his 16 appearances in a Diamondback uniform, retired the first two hitters before coughing up four straight singles. These hits plated two runs, slashing the Diamondbacks lead to 4–2. In came rookie lefty Andrew Saalfrank to pitch to the left-handed Peralta. Roberts countered with pinch-hitter Austin Barnes, whose grounder to third retired the side.

Brusdar Graterol pitched around a one-out single to center by Marte to record a scoreless bottom of the seventh, using a slick glove to end the inning with a 1-6-3 double play. Diamondbacks setup man Kevin Ginkel walked pinch-hitter Kolten Wong to open the eighth but followed with consecutive strikeouts of Betts and Freeman. A J.D. Martinez fly to center retired the side.

Alex Vesia fanned Christian Walker to begin the bottom of the eighth, but an error by third baseman Max Muncy put reserve Diamondbacks catcher Jose Herrera on first. Herrera advanced to second on a two-out single by center fielder Alek Thomas, but a grounder to first by pinch-hitter Jace Peterson left them stranded as the inning ended.

Finishing the Sweep

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Closer Paul Sewald took the hill in the top of the ninth to close out the series. He whiffed Muncy before catcher Will Smith stroked a single to right, his third hit of the game. Up came Taylor, who launched a deep fly to right-center. Thomas caught it on the warning track with ease, bringing up utility man Enrique Hernandez as the Dodgers’ last hope. He cracked the fifth pitch off the end of the bat, a lazy fly to left. Lourdes Gurriel settled underneath and made the easy catch, raising his arms in triumph as he fell to his knees and the crowd roared.

The dragon had been slain. Another 100-win team had fallen. The Dodgers were going home, and the Diamondbacks were headed to their third NLCS and first since 2007. Roberts concluded, “You look at the game, the series, they outplayed us. There’s no other spin to it. And I tip my hat to those guys and wish them well.”

Looking Ahead

Mantiply earned the win in relief, while Lynn took the loss. Sewald notched the save.

The Diamondbacks will face the winner of the other National League Division Series, where the Philadelphia Phillies lead the Atlanta Braves, two games to one. Game Four is Thursday evening in Philadelphia at 5:07 pm Arizona Time. Should the Braves win Thursday, Game Five will be Saturday in Atlanta at 5:07 pm Arizona Time.

The best-of-seven National League Championship Series (NLCS) will begin Monday, October 16 in either Atlanta or Philadelphia. TBS will have live coverage of each game. See the table below for the dates and times.

Game and Site Date and First Pitch (Arizona Time)
Game One, at ATL/PHL winner Mon, Oct 16, 5:07 pm
Game Two, at ATL/PHL winner Tue, Oct 17, 5:07 pm
Game Three (Home) Thu, Oct 19, 2:07 pm
Game Four (Home) Fri, Oct 20, 5:07 pm
Game Five, if necessary (Home) Sat, Oct 21, 5:07 pm
Game Six, if necessary, at ATL/PHL winner Mon, Oct 23, 2:07 pm*
Game Seven, if necessary, at ATL/PHL winner Tues, Oct 24, 5:07 pm

*If the ALCS is complete by Mon, Oct 23, NLCS Game Six will move to 5:07 pm.

Photo Gallery

PHOENIX, Oct. 11 — The four sons of Arizona Diamondbacks general manager Mike Hazen and his late wife Nicole, who tragically passed in 2022 from glioblastoma, throw out the ceremonial first pitch prior to Game 3 of the NLDS. The Diamondbacks defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers, 4–2, to win the series and advance to the NLCS. (Photo by Evan Thompson/Sport Relay)
PHOENIX, Oct. 11 — Arizona Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo speaks to the media following his team’s 4–2 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game 3 of the NLDS. The Diamondbacks won the series in a three-game sweep to advance to the NLCS. (Photo by Evan Thompson/Sport Relay)

Main Photo Credit:

PHOENIX, Oct 11 — Arizona Diamondbacks shortstop Geraldo Perdomo celebrates with an unidentified teammate after the Diamondbacks defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers, 4–2, to advance to the NLCS in a sweep. (Photo by Evan Thompson/Sport Relay)

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Evan M. Thompson, Editor-in-chief

Evan M. Thompson, Editor-in-chief

Evan is the owner and sole contributor of Thompson Talks, a website discussing the Big Four North American Pro Sports as well as soccer. He also is a credentialed member of the Colorado Rockies press corps. His first and biggest love is baseball.

Evan lives in Gilbert, Arizona and loves history, especially of sports. He is the treasurer for the Hemond Chapter of the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) and also is a USSF and AIA soccer referee. He released his first book, Volume I of A Complete History of the Major League Baseball Playoffs, in October of 2021.

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