Murphy, Mets beat Dodgers 3-2 to reach NLCS vs Cubs
ABS-CBN Sports on Oct 16, 2015 01:57 PM
New York Mets' Daniel Murphy (28) reacts after hitting a home run during the sixth inning in Game 5 of baseball's National League Division Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers Thursday, Oct. 15, 2015, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Alex Gallardo)
LOS ANGELES (AP) — The New York Mets advanced to the National League Championship Series by winning 3-2 at the Los Angeles Dodgers in the decisive Game 5 on Thursday, with Daniel Murphy responsible for the tying and go-ahead runs.
The Mets will play the Chicago Cubs in the NLCS; the first time those teams have met in the playoffs.
New York trailed 2-1 in the fourth inning when Los Angeles had three infielders on the right side and no-one near third base. When Lucas Duda was walked, Murphy trotted to second and then realized third was free and sprinted to steal the base.
"Just trying to casually walk to second and hoping that nobody called time because I look like an idiot if somebody calls time and I run to third," Murphy said. "I'm not sure who was supposed to cover, but there was nobody there. I'm not the fleetest of foot, but just fast enough for that one."
Travis d'Arnaud followed that with a sacrifice fly that brought Murphy home, tying the game 2-2.
Murphy then hit a solo homer off Zack Greinke in the sixth to put the Mets ahead to stay. He had three hits off Greinke for the game, batting .333 in the series and homering three times off ace Dodgers pair Greinke and Clayton Kershaw.
"Daniel was a tough out all series," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "He's always to me been a guy that's been a tough out. Pretty much hits everybody's fastball."
New York starter Jacob deGrom was below his best, allowing runners in each of his first five innings but limited the damage to just two runs: on singles by Justin Turner and Andre Ethier that put the hosts up 2-1 in the first inning.
Noah Syndergaard pitched the seventh in his first career relief appearance, and Jeurys Familia got the first six-out save of his career, getting through the eighth and ninth in quick time.
"What a team win," Murphy said. "It felt like everybody got a piece of this one."
The big-spending Dodgers, with a payroll of $289 million, remained without a World Series title since 1988. The pressure of that predicament was evident in the third inning when Ethier had a high-volume confrontation with Mattingly in the dugout.
Playing on the 27th anniversary of Kirk Gibson's famous World Series home run, Los Angeles failed to come up with a big drive, going 0 for 11 with runners in scoring position after Ethier's first-inning single.
"There are really no words to describe how you feel right now," said Mattingly, who could be out of a job after this latest postseason failure.
New York quickly will turn its attention to the Cubs and the NLCS, which starts Saturday in New York.