Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts labelled Chris Taylor "remarkable" and in an "elite class" after his three home-run display in their National League Championship Series (NLCS) Game 5 win over the Atlanta Braves.

Taylor joined Enrique Hernandez as the only Dodgers player ever to have a three-homer postseason game as they won 11-2 over the Braves to avoid elimination.

The victory sees the World Series champions pull the NLCS back to 3-2 but Taylor's hitting was all the talk as he became only the fifth player with a three-or-more homer and four-or-more hit postseason game.

"He's in an elite class of very few. When you're talking about Gil Hodges and Duke Snider who didn’t do it, it's pretty remarkable," Roberts said during a news conference after the win.

"He's one of the best I've seen at just being in the moment. When his career is over, he can look back and appreciate that.

"For me being a Chris Taylor fan and seeing he's a part of history now, it's pretty remarkable. He just does things the right way."

Taylor received a curtain call from the fans at Dodgers Stadium, as they turned around an early 2-0 deficit, piling on 11 unanswered runs.

A.J. Pollock also hit two home runs but was overshadowed by Taylor who finished the game with four hits from five at-bats and six RBIs.

"That was my first one [curtain call]," Taylor said. "Anytime you do something cool, when you do it at Dodgers Stadium it makes it that much sweeter.

"This is a special place. These fans are awesome. For that to happen for the first time on this stage in front of this crowd was a special moment.

"Mechanically I'm in a good place. Once you get a couple of hits and the confidence is there, that's when everything comes together."

The Dodgers become the third team in postseason history to have two players with a multi-home run game in the same postseason encounter. They also set a new franchise record for hits in a postseason game with 17, tying their postseason home-run record of five.

In bad news for the Dodgers, Roberts revealed starting pitcher Joe Kelly would likely not return this season after sustaining a biceps injury in the first inning.

"It's a bicep strain and we're going to continue to evaluate but the way it reads right now, that'll be it for the rest of the season for him," Roberts said.

Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts has revealed his misfiring offense has been dealt another blow in the National League Championship Series (NLCS) with Justin Turner ruled out for the postseason.

The Dodgers were beaten 9-2 by the Atlanta Braves, who took a 3-1 lead in the NLCS, meaning the World Series champions will need to three elimination games to progress.

LA only managed four hits for the game, with their only runs coming from A.J. Pollock's fifth inning two-run single. The Dodgers also only managed four hits in the 5-4 loss to the Braves in Game 2.

Turner, who hit at .278 with 27 home runs, 87 RBIs and 148 hits across the regular season, also limped out of Game 4 with a hamstring injury when running to first base in the seventh inning in a further blow.

"Early indications is it's a grade two [hamstring]. I think that'll be it for him," Roberts said during the post-game news conference. "Obviously he's very disappointed.

"We're talking through [his replacement] right now. It'll be a position player but not sure who."

Roberts had no answers when asked to explain his side's inconsistent offensive performance throughout the series, needing Cody Bellinger's miraculous eighth-inning three-run blast to rescue a 6-5 victory in Game 3.

"That's a very fair question," Roberts said when asked about the inconsistency. "I know it's not from a lack of work or preparation, so the last part is execution.

"I just don’t have an answer. Every time I write the lineup out, I feel very good, but it just hasn’t been as consistent as anyone expected… We've got to change that. I wish I had an answer."

Thursday's Game 5 will represent the fourth game this postseason that the Dodgers have faced elimination.

The Dodgers also trailed the Braves 3-1 in last year's NLCS, before storming back to win the next three games and the World Series, offering Roberts hope.

"You never want to have your back against the wall, that's not how you draw it up," he said. "We have a very resilient team, a very tough team.

"It's not going to get much tougher than facing Max Fried in an elimination game but we've done it before. We've got to win tomorrow and I believe we're equipped to win tomorrow's ball game."

Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts cannot remember a more important hit than Cody Bellinger's game-tying three-run homer in the defending World Series champions' come-from-behind 6-5 win over the Atlanta Braves.

The Dodgers trailed 5-2 in the eighth inning in Game of the National League Championship Series (NLCS), facing a 3-0 series deficit before 2019 NL MVP Bellinger's three-run shot tied Tuesday's MLB contest.

Mookie Betts hit a go-ahead double, driving Chris Taylor home, as the Dodgers completed a four-run eighth-inning rally, before Kenley Jansen closed it out in the ninth inning.

The Dodgers had never won a postseason game in their history when trailing by three or more runs in the eighth inning.

Bellinger's homer continued his remarkable postseason, hitting at .292 with seven hits and six RBIs after the two-time All Star endured a challenging regular season for the Dodgers, hitting at .165.

"Pure elation, joy," Roberts said about Bellinger's homer during his post-game news conference.

"It's hard to imagine a bigger hit that I can remember, given what was at stake. I couldn’t be happier for him. What a win. I'm kinda exhausted right now. Very happy for Cody."

Bellinger's regular-season return for the Dodgers had been modest, with 10 home runs, 52 hits and 36 RBIs from 95 games, which Roberts described as "rock bottom".

That was in contrast during his MVP-winning 2019 season he homered 47 times, with 170 hits and 115 RBIs, hitting at .305.

"I think this is going to make him much better. It's tested his character and he's going to be a better baseball player through these struggles," Roberts said.

"When you hit rock bottom, there's a lot of opportunity for openness and change. To his credit, he lowered his arms, understood he needed to hit the ball more square and flat and get the loop out of his swing.

"You see the path of that at-bat tonight. All the credit goes to him."

Bellinger, who hit at .212 with four home runs, 14 hits and 13 RBIs during the Dodgers' World Series-winning 2020 postseason, offered an insight into his mindset, labelling the playoffs as a "clean slate".

"In a way it's a whole different season," Bellinger, who celebrated his fourth career game-tying or go-ahead hit in the eighth inning or later of a playoff game – tied for fifth-most in postseason nhistory, told reporters. "Luckily for me I got a clean slate going into the postseason.

"I was feeling good towards the end of the regular season. I just tried to continue that and help this team win."

Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts says Max Scherzer was his "ace in the hole" after using him in the ninth inning for his first career save in Thursday's 2-1 series-deciding win over the San Francisco Giants.

Scherzer slammed the door on the Giants to clinch a 3-2 National League Division Series victory for the Dodgers after Cody Bellinger's RBI single for Justin Turner to score the go-ahead run in the ninth inning.

The 37-year-old right-hander, who had started Game 3 for 10 strikeouts across seven innings, was handed the ball to save the game on this occasion after warming up in the bullpen. It was Scherzer's first career save in his 432nd appearance.

"It was seeing the flow and how the game was going to play out, knowing we have an ace in the hole and trying to find the ultimate leverage spot to use him," Roberts told reporters after the game. "How the game played out, it made a lot of sense."

Roberts had used five pitchers before Scherzer's introduction, starting Corey Knebel before Julio Urias took over in the third inning, tossing down five strikeouts across four innings.

The game was tied at 1-1 leading into the ninth inning when Bellinger, who has had a season to forget, drove in Turner.

Bellinger, the 2019 National League MVP, hit at .165 with 10 home runs and 36 RBIs during the regular season, but he has batted at .294 with three RBIs in the postseason.

"Even for me, it's like going into that at-bat prior where he punched, he saw close to 10 punches, he grinded and competed, that last at-bat there was fight in there," Roberts said about Bellinger.

"It wasn't about mechanics, it was about a fight. It was me versus you. Cody versus [Giants pitcher] Camilo Doval.

"He got a huge hit. Like I said, Cody has grown a lot from adversity. For him to come up with the big hit, I'm very happy for him."

The result means the Dodgers have reached the National League Championship Series, where they will face the Atlanta Braves. The Dodgers are through to this stage for the fifth time in six seasons.

LA had to overcome the Giants, who boasted the best majors regular season record at 107-55, but Roberts said they were not content with that.

"I think what great ball clubs have the ability to do, is understand the gravity of a moment and a series in this case," he said. "Give everything you have to that series, which we did.

"It was a huge series but we also understand our job is not done. Now our focus turns to the Braves."

The Los Angeles Dodgers doubt Clayton Kershaw will pitch for the World Series champions in the MLB playoffs after the ace landed on the 10-day injured list.

Kershaw is back on the IL just days before the Dodgers begin their quest for back-to-back championships due to left forearm discomfort, the franchise announced on Saturday.

The three-time Cy Young Award winner had returned from a left forearm injury, which sidelined him for 57 games, however the star pitcher exited Friday's clash with the Milwaukee Brewers.

Kershaw – an eight-time All-Star and National League (NL) MVP who is in the final season of his three-year, $93million contract – lasted just 1.2 innings, giving up three runs with one strikeout against the Brewers.

As the Dodgers prepare for the offseason, manager Dave Roberts was asked if the 33-year-old future Hall of Famer will pitch again this year and he told reporters: "I don't think so.

"I think right now where we're at, we're going to proceed with that mindset. I'm certainly saddened, hoping we never had to get to this point.

"You know, you want to be certainly very thoughtful and sensitive to Clayton, but in the same breath, still kind of making sure we stay focused on moving forward. That's kind of where we're all at."

In 2021, Kershaw's ERA stands at 3.55 – his highest number since his rookie year (4.26) with the Dodgers in 2008.

Kershaw – a World Series champion – boasts a 10-8 record this season with 144 strikeouts in 121.2 innings pitched.

"My future's gonna take care of itself," Kershaw said after leaving Friday's contest. "I'm not really worried about that right now. I really wanted to be a part of the moment right now, and I wanted to be with this group going through October.

"That was my only focus this year. Once I got hurt, it was just to come back and make it up for this month. That's the hard part right now is knowing it's gonna be a challenge to even contribute at all this next month.

"But as far as anything else goes — I haven't wrapped my head around it, and I don't plan to any time soon. I'm just excited to watch these guys next month."

Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw was left embarrassed by his shortest career start in MLB, labelling the performance "horrible".

Kershaw – a future Hall of Famer – lasted just one inning in game one of a doubleheader against the Chicago Cubs, who beat the World Series champions 7-1 on Tuesday.

The three-time Cy Young Award winner and 2014 National League (NL) MVP allowed four runs in the opening inning at Wrigley Field. It was only the second time in his illustrious career where he allowed four or more runs in the first inning.

"It's embarrassing. No excuses," Dodgers veteran Kershaw – also an eight-time All-Star – said after giving up four hits and two walks while striking out two.

"That was horrible. I put our team in a really bad spot in the doubleheader. 

"Thankfully, the 'pen stepped up and ate some innings for me. Just chalk it up to a really bad start and get ready for the next one."

Kershaw added: "I could overanalyse it and try and think about it, but I have no idea. Everything was bad.

"I'm not going to try and analyse it too much. Just hope this one was an outlier and get ready for the next one."

Kershaw's ERA rose from 2.09 to 2.95 as the stuttering Dodgers lost for the seventh time in nine games.

"I would have liked to continue to go and try to be better," the 33-year-old said. "But when you're that bad, you really can't stand up for yourself too much."

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said: "I just think the volume in that first inning, and kind of looking out at the upside of having him go back out there, I just didn’t see it.

"It just didn't seem like he had the feel for any spin today, and even the fastball location just wasn't what it normally is. For me, it's an outlier outing and we've just got to move forward."

Los Angeles Dodgers star Cody Bellinger is "trending in the right direction" as he continues to recover from a hairline fracture in his left fibula, according to manager Dave Roberts.

MLB World Series champions the Dodgers have been without 2019 National League (NL) MVP Bellinger since April 5 after he suffered a lower leg injury, which was initially described as a bruised calf.

Roberts provided an update on Bellinger – a Gold Glove and Silver Slugger Award winner – and his fitness on Tuesday.

"[He is] trending in the right direction," Roberts told reporters prior to the Dodgers' clash with the Cincinnati Reds.

"He's doing great. Once that fracture heals, coinciding with the live at-bats, hopefully we can hit the ground running when he's healed."

Two-time All-Star Bellinger is hitting .211 (four-for-19) with two RBIs in four games this season.

The Dodgers have lost back-to-back games following Monday's defeat to the Cincinnati Reds.

The season series between the Dodgers and Reds has shifted dramatically in recent MLB seasons.

Per Stats Perform, the Dodgers claimed all six meetings in 2017, the Reds took six of seven one year later, while Los Angeles clinched five of six in 2019.

Los Angeles Dodgers ace Trevor Bauer warned San Diego Padres star Fernando Tatis Jr. about allegedly peeking at signs as the MLB rivalry intensifies.

Tatis continued his red-hot form with another pair of home runs on Saturday, but the Padres still lost 5-4 to World Series champions the Dodgers.

A day after homering twice off star pitcher Clayton Kershaw, Tatis homered twice off Bauer – becoming the sixth player with a multi-homer game off a former Cy Young winner twice in one season and the first to do so in back-to-back games, per Stats Perform.

But a day later, a moment in Tatis' at-bat in the sixth inning caught the attention of the Dodgers after the 2020 Silver Slugger appeared to peek at catcher Will Smith's sign before the pitch.

As the National League (NL) West rivalry dominates MLB, 2020 American League (AL) Cy Young Award winner Bauer said in a video published via his YouTube channel: "That's the type of stuff that would get you hit in other games.

"Now, I'm mild mannered about it. Flip the bat, do all that stuff, fine. If you're going to look at the signs, not OK, and if you do it again, the team that you're playing probably isn't going to take too kindly, and there might have to be some on-field stuff.

"That is disrespecting your opponent, look at their signs, stuff like that. Whereas the bat flips and celebrating with your team-mates is fine, in my opinion."

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts also addressed the incident prior to Sunday's clash against the Padres, telling reporters: "When you talk about peaking, that's just not the way you play baseball.

"If that is the case, which I don't know, that'll be noted."

When asked whether he meant adjusting how catchers give signs, Roberts replied: "No, that's not what I'm talking about."

Los Angeles Dodgers star Cody Bellinger has been diagnosed with a hairline fracture in his left fibula.

World Series champions the Dodgers have been without 2019 National League (NL) MVP Bellinger since April 5 with what was initially described as a bruised calf.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts provided an update on two-time All-Star Bellinger before Friday's blockbuster against NL rivals the San Diego Padres.

"At least we know what Cody is dealing with," Roberts told reporters.

"Certain players heal differently, so I just don't know where Cody is going to be at.

"But I can say comfortably that it's not a day-to-day thing, and we can just put it on the back burner, let Cody do his rehab and join us hopefully soon."

Bellinger is hitting .211 (four-for-19) with two RBIs in four games this season.

The high-flying Dodgers are 6-1 since Bellinger went down with the injury.

Roberts added: "Now, it's just more of getting that thing healed up, and when he's ready to go, he'll be back with us.

"He's just rehabbing and doing everything he can to join us as soon as possible."

The Dodgers' 11-2 record is the best in the majors and tied for the best in team history through 13 games in a season (four other times, most recently 2005).

Roberts' Dodgers won the season series with San Diego last season, 6-4 – their 10th consecutive year doing so.

Their .659 winning percentage against the Padres since 2011 (118-61) is the best by any team against a current divisional opponent over that span, per Stats Perform.

Dave Roberts refused to blame either Cody Bellinger or Justin Turner for the bizarre mix-up that cost the Los Angeles Dodgers in their Opening Day defeat to the Colorado Rockies.

World Series champions the Dodgers outhit the Rockies 15-11, had eight runners on base via walk and 20 total bases, but they scored only five runs.

While an 8-5 defeat ultimately was not decided by one play, the first run of the game summed up a day on which manager Roberts said "all the way around, we didn't play well".

Bellinger hit a home run at the top of the third, with Turner already at first base.

But rather than a two-run homer, Bellinger ended up being given out and had to settle for a one-run RBI.

His hit slipped through the glove of left fielder Raimel Tapia before clearing the park and Turner thought the ball had been caught, meaning he hared back to first and passed the advancing Bellinger in the process.

"I don't think there's blame to be placed," Roberts said.

"I think Cody was coming out of the box hard, which he should have, and he's looking at where the ball was at, going hard.

"Justin was just past second base and when he saw the ball in Tapia's glove, he retreated and put his head down to try to get back to potentially be doubled up.

"And then at that point in time, they just kind of crossed between first and second."

The Dodgers finished with a 43-17 record last season and went 7-3 against the Rockies, with their results against the rest of the NL West a slightly more modest 20-10.

They will hope there are few further mishaps in 2021, although Roberts was also reluctant to criticise the umpire.

"From what I understand, he didn't give the out call, so he was just trying to see it," Roberts said. "And once he did see the ball go over, he gave the home run call.

"At that point in time, Justin had already retreated.

"It's just one of those funky plays that I don't think is going to happen again this year."

Three of first baseman Bellinger's 12 homers last season came against the Rockies and he will get the opportunity to atone for Thursday's error on Friday.

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