LOS ANGELES -- Game 2 of the National League Division Series got swept up in the Chase Utley takeout slide that broke Ruben Tejada's leg, and rightfully so, but that play also served as a turning point for the Dodgers' offense, which tied Saturday's game on the play in question then rallied to take the lead that provided the winning margin over the Mets.
The two who drove in the go-ahead runs were Adrian Gonzalez and Justin Turner.
Those two have driven the Dodgers' offense for most of the season, batting third and fourth for a long stretch of the season. But down the stretch of the regular season both struggled and both battled injuries.
Turner suffered a leg infection that sent him to the disabled list, then a bone bruise and tendonitis in his left knee in September. Over the final two months of the season Turner hit .237/.340/.351 in 39 games.
Gonzalez hit .238/.316/.371 over the final two months in 55 games, and in September battled neck and back issues.
The Dodgers were 1-for-8 with runners in scoring position in Game 1, and were 1-for-6 with runners in scoring position in the first six innings against Noah Syndergaard. It was a sore subject for manager Don Mattingly before the game.
"At this point we're talking about trying to win a game. So, I mean, throw stats out, cut them up and throw them out there on the table right now," Mattingly said. "I don't know how much good it does to kind of try to evaluate your club and your chances of winning a game today."
It seemed like the Dodgers were cursed because Utley singled with Kike Hernandez on second base - the tying run - but even though the ball reached the outfield, the Dodgers didn't score because Hernandez didn't get a good read on the ball. Hernandez would score on the fielder's choice by Howie Kendrick that produced the fateful Utley slide.
Gonzalez in Game 1 was 0-for-3 with three strikeouts against starter Jacob deGrom, then hit an RBI single in the eighth against Tyler Clippard, then in Game 2 was 0-for-3 with three strikeouts against Syndergaard, then laced a two-run double in the seventh against Addison Reed.
"I would think from both teams [Gonzalez would] be the first guy everyone would want up in an RBI situation, including their team and our team. He's just the best at it," Zack Greinke said. "I think he got an RBI yesterday too. His one hit was RBI. So he's just that type of hitter."
"For me, thank God I can just focus on every at-bat at hand, I don't think back to my previous at-bats," Gonzalez said. "I was just focused on getting fastball middle, and he threw me three fastballs for strikes. And just luckily I was able to put it in play, thank God, and got it over Duda's head and gave us the runs and gave JT a chance to come up with another big hit."
Turner doubled and scored earlier in the game, the only run against Noah Syndergaard before the decisive seventh-inning rally. Then he drove in Gonzalez with another double in the seventh.
The Dodgers ended the game 4-for-12 with runners in scoring position, with three doubles.
Turner has two multi-hit games in his first two postseason starts, and is 4-for-8 with three doubles in the NLDS. The Dodgers record for doubles in any postseason series is four, by Hanley Ramirez in the 2013 NLDS against the Braves.
Since joining the Dodgers in 2014, Turner is hitting .318/.375/.677 with 10 extra-base hits in 14 games against the Mets, counting the playoffs.
"It's gratifying to win a game in a Division Series and put ourselves in a good position going to New York. That was a must-win for us if we go down 0-2 there, our backs are really against the wall," Turner said. "So doesn't matter who the other team is. We want to win."