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Atlanta Hangs on to Beat LA, Rays Take 3-0 Lead

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In Day 3 of League Championship Series play, the Atlanta Baseball Club was looking to extend their lead over the consensus favorite Los Angeles Dodgers to two games, while the Tampa Bay Rays sought a commanding 3-0 lead over the Houston Astros.

Braves 8, Dodgers 7

Atlanta leads 2-0, best of 7

W: Tyler Matzek; L: Tony Gonsolin; S: Mark Melancon

Gonsolin subbed in as the Dodgers’ Game 2 starter after Clayton Kershaw was scratched due to his ongoing back spasm issues. He was responsible for five Atlanta runs on give hits with three walks and seven strikeouts.

Atlanta Club’s Big Inning

The Atlanta franchise had a lead as large as 7-0 heading into the 7th inning stretch, but the Dodgers scored three runs in the 7th and then came close to tying the game in the final frame, tallying four runs off relievers Josh Tomlin and Melancon. Melancon eventually recorded the final out to secure an Atlanta victory.

Intense 9th Inning Comeback Attempt

Freddie Freeman and Ozzie Albies homered for Atlanta, while Corey Seager and Max Muncy contributed their own shots for LA.

Rays 5, Astros 2

Rays lead 3-0, best of 7

W: Ryan Yarbrough; L: José Urquidy; S: Diego Castillo

2017 AL MVP* José Altuve opened scoring in the 1st inning with a solo shot off Yarbrough, who appeared as a starting pitcher rather than in his usual role as a bulk reliever. Altuve probably would prefer to forget the rest of his night, as he committed three throwing errors, one of which led to the Rays’ five-run rally in the 6th inning.

Following Altuve’s error which allowed Brandon Lowe to reach base, the Rays loaded the bags on a Yandy Díaz single, setting up Joey Wendle‘s go-ahead RBI single. Enoli Paredes then hit two consecutive Rays batters to force in a run, and Hunter Renfroe added two more runs with a double to right field.

Rays 5-Run Inning

Michael Brantley homered for the Astros in the bottom of the inning, and the Astros threatened with the tying run at the plate with one out in the bottom of the 9th. Castillo struck out Altuve and induced a flyout from Brantley to end the game, giving the Rays a commanding 3-0 lead in the American League Championship Series.

Play resumes at 6:05 PM ET tomorrow with the Dodgers facing the Braves down two games. Matchup: Julio Urías (3-0, 3.27 ERA) vs. Kyle Wright (2-4, 5.21 ERA). The National League contest will be followed by the Rays at Astros at 8:40 PM ET. Matchup: Tyler Glasnow (5-1, 4.08 ERA) will take the ball against veteran ace Zack Greinke (3-3, 4.03 ERA) in a potential clincher.

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