In a game the Dodgers won 12-3, you’d think the biggest moment came at some point in one of their at bats. Though they had some timely hits, the biggest moment of the game came in the second inning. It was a turning point, that could have potentially saved the series for LA.
With two outs and the bases loaded in the bottom of the second, Dave Roberts took Adam Kolarek out and brought in Julio Urías. The Padres had taken the 2-1 lead, and Fernando Tatis Jr. was coming up to the plate. One swing of the bat could have put the Dodgers in an early hole, one that they might not have been able to climb out of. Instead, Urías got Tatis Jr. to strikeout on four pitches, ending the inning.
“The play of the game, the first hitter he faced,” Roberts said. “That could have been a different game. That just flipped the game.”
The Dodgers escaped the inning with only a one-run deficit. Things then quickly changed, as a five-run inning in the third put the game out of reach, as they went on to win the series. The MVP of the game could go to a lot of players, but without that Urías strikeout, who knows if the Dodgers win the game.
“It was unbelievable,” Will Smith said who was behind the plate catching Urías. “Just coming in and going right at him. Not being scared. He’s other one who kept us in the ballgame. He slammed the door on them and let the offense take over.”
Urías didn’t stop there. He pitched five innings and didn’t allow an earned run. He struck out six while allowing only one hit and walking one batter.
“That was a gutty outing,” Justin Turner said. “It doesn’t surprise us. He’s a bulldog out there. When he’s on the mound, he competes as good as anyone. For him to go out there and shut down a really good lineup the way he did. He was outstanding. he doesn’t shy away from the big moment and you could definitely see that out there tonight.”
Urías has been clutch for the Dodgers as of late in the postseason. In his last 11 outings in October, Urías has a 2.12 ERA in 17 innings. He has 16 strikeouts and only two walks, while holding opponents to a .167 average.
“I’m here to do whatever they ask of me, and if that’s coming in for the first inning, the fourth inning, the fifth or sixth inning, it’s something I’m going to do,” Urías said. “I’m going to attack and focus on every pitch, which is my mentality this entire season. Whether it’s coming in to get one out, as a starter or reliever, you’ll always get 100 percent from me.”
His willingness to do whatever is asked for him doesn’t go unnoticed, as Roberts spoke highly on his young lefty following the game.
“He’s really doing a great job,” Roberts said. “Im’ really excited for him. His openness for whatever role, he just wants his number called.”