NLCS Game 5: Dodgers stay alive after crushing four homers and beating Cardinals 6-4

Big League Stew

In a do-or-die Game 5, the Los Angeles Dodgers brought their home-run hitting sticks. The Dodgers hit four homers Wednesday en route to a 6-4 win against the St. Louis Cardinals. The victory keeps the Dodgers alive in this NLCS series, but the Cardinals still lead 3-2.

• Adrian Gonzalez homered twice, both solo shots. The first came in the third inning, a long blast to right-field that put the Dodgers up 3-2. It answered a two-run inning from the Cardinals that tied the game at two. He then hit another in the eighth inning that made the score 6-2. Gonzalez had three hits and scored three runs.

• Carl Crawford and A.J. Ellis also hit solo homers for the Dodgers, who got into the fence-swinging spirit after being held homer-less in the first three games of this series.

• Zack Greinke had two rough innings, but cruised otherwise. Including the final out of the third inning, he retired 13 straight Cardinals batters until he left the game after the seventh inning. He struck out four and gave up six hits, which yielded two St. Louis runs.

• Carlos Beltran had an RBI triple in the Cardinals' two-run third inning, and Matt Holliday followed with an RBI double. Holliday had three hits in the game.

• St. Louis starter Joe Kelly didn't bring his Game 1 stuff. He pitched five innings, allowing seven hits and four runs.

• Yadier Molina, the Cardinals MVP-candidate catcher was 0 for 4 with two strikeouts. He grounded into double plays in his other two at-bats, one of which ended an early scoring opportunity for the Cardinals. Molina left six runners on base.

• Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen had a rough outing in the ninth inning. He gave up two runs on four hits. But he did strike out three.

It was all the way back in the first inning, but the inning-ending double play that got Greinke and the Dodgers out of a bases-loaded jam was huge. Molina grounded to Juan Uribe, who made a nice snag, tagged third and threw across the diamond. Gonzalez scooped up Uribe's hopping throw. It was a big sigh of relief for the boys in Dodger blue.

• Yasiel Puig, because we always do. Specifically, when he struck out looking, put his hands on his hips, glared at the umpire and stayed in the batter's box for a good 10 seconds. He also misplayed a ball in right field during the ninth inning that led to the Cardinals' third run.

• The Dodgers starting to hit homers. Now can they keep hitting homers?

• Will Hanley Ramirez play in Game 6? He left Game 5 early again, as he's been dealing with a broken rib.

• The Cardinals jumping on Jansen in the ninth inning for a couple of runs.

• It's only one game, but people are still going to be talking about: Will the Cardinals collapse for a second straight year in the NLCS? They blew a 3-1 lead last year against the San Francisco Giants.

The Dodgers survive to see the series go back to St. Louis for Game 6 on Friday. Clayton Kershaw (17-10, 1.73 ERA) will face Michael Wacha (6-1, 2.40 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 8:37 p.m. ET.

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Mike Oz is an editor for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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