October 9, 2015: Game One of NLDS

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Date: October 9, 2015
Mets starter: Jacob deGrom
Mets: 3
Dodgers: 1
Winning pitcher: Jacob deGrom
Key player(s): Jacob deGrom, Daniel Murphy, David Wright
Key play: Murphy’s home run, Wright’s single

The Mets and Dodgers faced each other in the National League Division Series. The teams played the opener on a Friday night at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. Jacob deGrom struck out thirteen batters as the Mets took a one-game series lead with a 3-1 win.

DeGrom recorded seven strikeouts in pitching scoreless ball from the first inning to the third. Meanwhile, Dodgers’ starter Clayton Kershaw yielded two singles and surrendered one walk in shutting down the Mets. In the top of the fourth, Daniel Murphy slugged a home run for a 1-0 New York lead. Travis d'Arnaud and Lucas Duda were struck out and Kershaw got Michael Cuddyer on an inning-ending fly ball to center fielder Joc Pederson. DeGrom then fanned Andre Ethier during a scoreless bottom half.

Kershaw struck out the side amid a single by Curtis Granderson in the top of the fifth. DeGrom followed up by fanning both Carl Crawford and Corey Seager in a perfect bottom of the inning. Kershaw set down the Mets in order in the top of the sixth. Jacob fanned Adrian Gonzalez to start the bottom half. He retired the next two batters and Kershaw issued three walks around two outs, loading the bases, in the top of the seventh. Against Los Angeles reliever Pedro Baez, David Wright singled to drive home both Duda and Ruben Tejada for a three-run Mets lead. Baez fanned Yoenis Cespedes to close out the inning. DeGrom then chalked up strikeouts of Pederson and pinch-hitter Chase Utley to finish off a perfect bottom half.

Dodgers’ reliever Joel Peralta set down the side 1-2-3 in the top of the eighth. Howie Kendrick hit a one-out double against New York’s Tyler Clippard in the bottom of the inning. Seager popped out to second baseman Murphy and a single by Gonzalez brought home Kendrick. The Mets’ Jeurys Familia got Justin Turner on an inning-ending line drive to first baseman Murphy (who had just shifted from second.) Los Angeles’s Chris Hatcher then hurled a perfect top of the ninth.

Ethier grounded out to Murphy to lead off the bottom of the ninth inning. Pinch-hitter Jimmy Rollins was also retired on a ground ball to Murphy. Pederson then grounded back to Familia for the game’s final out. The Mets had a victory and the early lead in the series.