Los Angeles Dodgers clinch playoff berth with victory over San Francisco Giants

Los Angeles Dodgers clinch playoff berth with victory over San Francisco Giants

The Los Angeles Dodgers clinched a playoff berth with an emphatic victory over the San Francisco Giants on Friday night. Clayton Kershaw was dominant on the mound, striking out 11 batters in seven innings of work, and Cody Bellinger hit two home runs to lead the Dodgers to a 10-2 win.

The Dodgers are now 92-52 on the season and sit comfortably atop the National League West standings. They will likely face off against the Washington Nationals in the first round of the playoffs, although the Atlanta Braves and Colorado Rockies are still in contention for the automatic National League Wild Card spot.

Whatever team they face, the Dodgers are confident that they can make a deep run in the postseason. Kershaw is having another Cy Young Award-caliber season, and Bellinger has emerged as one of the most dangerous sluggers in all of baseball.

With a talented roster and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs, the Dodgers appear poised to make their first World Series appearance since 1988.

Colorado Rockies keep pace in divisional race with another win

The Colorado Rockies entered Wednesday’s game against the Washington Nationals at Coors Field trailing the first-place Dodgers by 2.5 games in the National League West Divisional race. The Rockies had won six of their last 10 games, but they needed a victory against the Nationals to keep pace. Nolan Arenado and Trevor Story led the offense as they each hit home runs in the game. Arenado’s home run was a two-run shot in the sixth inning that gave the Rockies a 4-3 lead. Story hit his 25th home run of the season in the eighth inning to give the Rockies a 5-3 lead. Arenado also drove in three other runs in the game, and Scott Oberg got his eighth save of the season as he pitched a scoreless ninth inning.

This victory helps to keep the pressure on the Dodgers as they continue their pursuit of their first divisional title since 2009. The Rockies still have eight games remaining against Los Angeles, including four games at Dodger Stadium later this week. They will also play two more series against the Nationals, including a four-game series next week in Washington.

Arizona Diamondbacks fall out of playoff contention with series sweep by San Diego Padres

Arizona Diamondbacks fans woke up on Wednesday morning to the disheartening news that their team had been officially eliminated from playoff contention. The Arizona Diamondbacks (82-79) were swept in a three-game series by the San Diego Padres (68-93), who are in last place in the NL West division.

The first game of the series was played on Monday night, and it was a pitcher’s duel between Zack Greinke of the Diamondbacks and Clayton Richard of the Padres. Neither team was able to score until the sixth inning, when Christian Villanueva hit a two-run homer to give the Padres a 2-0 lead. The Diamondbacks got one back in the seventh inning when David Peralta hit an RBI single, but they were unable to score again and lost 2-1.

The second game of the series was played on Tuesday night. This time, it was the Padres who scored early, with two runs in the second inning. The Diamondbacks got one back in the bottom of the inning when Ketel Marte hit an RBI single, but they were unable to score again and lost 2-1.

The third and final game of the series was played on Wednesday afternoon. Once again, it was a low-scoring affair, with neither team scoring until the fifth inning. San Diego scored first on an RBI single by Freddy Galvis, then added another run in the sixth inning on an RBI double by Hunter Renfroe. The Diamondbacks got one back in the bottom of the inning when Paul Goldschmidt hit a solo home run, but they were unable to score again and lost 2-1.

With this sweep, the Diamondbacks have now lost eight consecutive games and 11 of their last 12 games. They finish out their season with four games against the Colorado Rockies next week.

San Francisco Giants cap off successful homestand with narrow win over Los Angeles Dodgers

The San Francisco Giants capped off a very successful 10-game homestand with a narrow 3-2 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Thursday night. This was an important game for the Giants, as they were looking to snap their recent four-game losing streak.

The Giants got off to a good start in the bottom of the first inning, as they were able to score two runs off Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw. Hunter Pence drove in the first run of the game with a double down the left field line, and Brandon Belt followed that up with an RBI single to center field.

The Dodgers got one run back in the top of the third inning, but the Giants were able to extend their lead in the bottom of the inning. With runners on first and second base and two outs, Brandon Crawford hit a three-run home run to give the Giants a 5-1 lead.

Clayton Kershaw was able to settle down after that, and he pitched four shutout innings from thereon out. But the Dodgers weren’t able to get any closer than that, as the Giants bullpen did a good job of holding them at bay.

Hunter Strickland got the win for the Giants, while Kenley Jansen took the loss for the Dodgers. This was an important victory for San Francisco, as it gives them some breathing room in regards to their Wild Card standings. They now sit four games back of the second Wild Card spot with just 12 games remaining on their schedule.

Playoff races heating up as teams battle for final postseason berths

With the MLB season winding down, teams are starting to clinch their playoff spots. The Red Sox, Yankees, and Astros have already punched their tickets to the postseason, while the Braves, Rockies, Cardinals, and Dodgers are in contention for the last few spots.

The Braves currently hold the second wild card spot in the National League, just one game ahead of the Brewers and two games ahead of the Phillies. The Rockies are in a similar position in the NL West, holding onto the second wild card spot by half a game over the Dodgers and Diamondbacks.

In the American League, the Angels and Twins are vying for the second wild card spot. The Angels currently hold a one-game lead over the Twins and Rays.

The Cardinals sit just one game back of the Rockies in the NL Wild Card race, while the Dodgers are two games back. In the AL East, the Yankees have a five-game lead over the Red Sox.

Here’s a look at each of those races:

National League Wild Card Race:

Braves: 86-68 (.558) – Clinched playoff berth
Brewers: 85-69 (.552)
Phillies: 81-74 (.526)
Rockies: 85-70 (.548) – Clinched playoff berth

Cardinals: 83-72 (.532)
Dodgers: 81-74 (.526)

National League West Race:
Rockies: 85-70 (.548) – Clinched playoff berth Dodgers: 81-74 (.526) Diamondbacks: 80-76 (.517)
Giants: 77-79 (.487) Padres: 74-84 (.462)