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The Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the Atlanta Braves 3-0 at Dodger Stadium on Friday night to take a commanding 2-0 lead in the National League Division Series.Clayton Kershaw was masterful on the mound http://www.indiansfanproshop.com/authentic-b.j.-upton-jersey , allowing just two hits across eight innings. Kershaw threw only 85 pitchesas the Braves' bats were silenced for a second straight game.The Dodgers, meanwhile, had their offense buoyed by a two-run home run from Manny Machado in the first inning and a solo jack off the bat of Yasmani Grandal in the fifth.MLB MLBMANNYWOOD. FngdCtFV7OKershaw Continues to Exorcise Playoff Demons with Dominant Game 2Fair or not, Kershaw has been dogged for years by a narrative that he isn't reliable in the postseason.And sure, there have been ugly moments along the way that leant credence to chatter about his shaky second-season demeanor.But if recent history has been any indication, it's hard to view Kershaw as some kind of playoff liability.Jon Weisman jonweismanI made a chart of all of Clayton Kershaws #Dodgers playoff starts, to show that yes, hes been terrible at times -- but hes also been great. mvNCAtTEU1 t2d6TiH9IcOne year after the southpaw went 3-0 with a 3.82 ERA across six postseason appearances (five starts), he picked up where he left off and made light work of Atlanta's lineup with a brilliant and efficient effort in Game 2.MLB Network MLBNetwork.ClaytonKersh22 was in command tonight. #MLBTonight breaks down the Dodgers Game Two victory, right now! #LADetermined #Postseason 4FP6mXBzuSAnd no, it wasn't a start dominated by overpowering stuff.That isn't Kershaw's M.O. anymore now that his fastball is barely eclipsing 90 mph on average, perFanGraphs.However, the three-time Cy Young Award winner was brilliant in other ways and induced weak contact all night long to frustrate a Braves lineup that ranked fourth among all clubs in hits."I don't care how you get the outs," Kershaw told ESPN.com'sAlden Gonzalezin September. "It doesn't matter to me how bad it looks, how good it looks, how many strikeouts you have. None of that stuff matters as long as you get the outs."The result of that mindset? Thelongestpostseason outing of Kershaw's career and, more importantly, a reminder that L.A. has the National League's most dangerous rotation.Braves' Lineup Showing Youth with Impatience at PlateThe Braves didn't record a single extra-base hit in Thursday night's Game 1 loss, and the results weren't much prettier Friday.Although Ronald Acuna Jr. led off the game with a double Mike Napoli Jersey , that was the only real damage any Braves batter did against Kershaw.In fact, Kershaw retired 14 straight batters after Acuna's double before Ender Inciarte reached on an infield single with two outs in the top of the fifth inning.Compounding matters was that Atlanta simply didn't make L.A.'s ace work. While the Braves ranked a respectable 12th in weighted on-base average (.319) during the regular season, perFanGraphs, they were consumed by impatience and made life easy for the Dodgers as they hacked away at pitches early in the count and allowed Kershaw to produce quick outs.Bill Plunkett billplunkettocr#Braves are swinging like theyve got a plane to catch. Kershaw has faced 17 batters. Every one of them has swung at the first or second pitch. 5 swung at the 1st pitch, 12 were patient and waited for the 2nd. Result -- #Dodgers Kershaw is thru 5 scoreless IP on 55 pitches.Andy McCullough McCulloughTimesThe scouting report on Clayton Kershaw involves hunting fastballs and sliders up in the zone, early in the count, and looking to elevate. The Braves are just whacking everything into the ground. Six scoreless for Kershaw.As a result, the Braves offense is in a free-fall.And according to ESPN'sSarah Langs, they are the first team since the 1921 New York Giants to open a postseason series with back-to-back scoreless appearances.The Braves should be a force to be reckoned with in the National League for quite some time given the quality of their young core, but they are going to have to deal with a couple of sobering setbacks on the game's biggest stage before they can make another leap.Buehler Can Become Household Name with Big Performance in Decisive Game 3It's hard to grab headlining honors in the Dodgers rotation with Kershaw andHyun-Jin Ryu dealing, but Walker Buehler will have a chance to make himself a household name in Game 3.Just 24 years old, Buehler cemented himself as a core piece of L.A.'s starting staff this season as he rebounded from a forgettable 9.1 innings in 2017 to go 8-5 with a 2.62 ERA and 4.08 strikeout-to-walk rate."If it wasn't for Walker, we probably wouldn't be here in this situation right now," second basemen Enrique Hernandez said, per ESPN.com'sBradford Doolittle."He's been huge."Still, the hype has yet to reach a fever pitch.That can all change, though, if he rolls into hostile territory and leads the Dodgers to a sweep in Game 3.Some rejuvenated Braves bats will likely greet Buehler in Atlanta, but the opportunity will present itself for him to produce what is sure to be the first of many signature moments.What's Next?The series shifts to SunTrust Park in Atlanta as the Dodgers aim to punch their ticket to the NLCS. Game 3 will get underway Sunday at 8:07 p.m. ET. Jeff Gross/Getty ImagesThe Boston Red Sox overcame a 4-0 deficit with nine runs in the final three innings to defeat the Los Angeles Dodgers http://www.indiansfanproshop.com/authent...ton-jersey , 9-6, in Game 4 of the World Series on Saturday evening.Boston is now up three games to one and has a chance to clinch its fourth championship in 15 seasons with a victory on Sunday night. Game time is Sunday at 8:15 p.m. ET, with Fox televising the game live from Los Angeles.L.A. is a slight -125 favorite (bet $125 to win $100) to send the series back to Fenway Park, per OddsShark, and the over/under total is seven runs. Two left-handed aces will go against each other, as Clayton Kershaw gets the call for Los Angeles, while David Price does the same for Boston.Chris Sale was in line to make his second start of the series after starting Game 1, but manager Alex Cora opted to go with Price on three days' rest from his last start.In Game 1, Kershaw threw four full frames but allowed five earned runs in an eventual 8-4 loss. Price, on the other hand, went six innings and allowed only two earned runs in the Sox's Game 2 win, as well as coming on in relief for two-thirds of an inning in the Sox's Game 3 loss.Though Kershaw, in particular, didn't show it his last time out, these two are both capable of trading zeroes in a classic pitcher's duel.Here's a look at the most current World Series MVP props (via Oddschecker) alongside some commentary. World Series MVP OddsBoston Red Sox DH J.D. Martinez: 12-5Boston Red Sox OF Mookie Betts: 3-1Boston Red Sox OF Andrew Benintendi: 7-2Boston Red Sox SS Xander Bogaerts: 10-1Boston Red Sox 1B Steve Pearce: 13-1Boston Red Sox SP/RP Nathan Eovaldi: 17-1Boston Red Sox OF Jackie Bradley Jr.: 17-1Boston Red Sox 3B Rafael Devers: 17-1Boston Red Sox SP David Price: 20-1Boston Red Sox SP Chris Sale: 20-1Los Angeles Dodgers OF Yasiel Puig: 20-1Los Angeles Dodgers SS Manny Machado: 25-1Los Angeles Dodgers 3B Justin Turner: 25-1Los Angeles Dodgers OF Cody Bellinger: 30-1Los Angeles Dodgers IF Max Muncy: 30-1 World Series MVP NotesRed Sox designated hitter J.D. Martinez leads the way at 12-5. The slugger delivered run-scoring hits in his first two series at-bats, but he's had just one hit in his 12 at-bats since.That lonesome hit was a big one, though, as a two-run single in the fifth inning of Game 2 turned a 2-2 game into a 4-2 lead for the Sox. That score didn't change as Boston took a 2-0 series lead.The issue with picking an MVP for the Red Sox is that the team has had different heroes in each of their three wins.Left fielder Andrew Benintendi was the star in Game 1 with four hits and three runs.Martinez, outfielder Mookie Betts (three hits and the game-winning run) and starting pitcher David Price (six innings Yonder Alonso Jersey , two earned runs, a win) tag-teamed Boston's Game 2 effort.And the clear Game 4 hero was first baseman Steve Pearce, who hit the game-tying home run in the eighth inning before a bases-clearing double turned a nail-biting 5-4 advantage into a (somewhat) comfortable 8-4 lead.If one of those aforementioned hitters posts another strong outing en route to a Sox win, then expect that person to win the World Series MVP. In other words, if Martinez smacks a 450-foot dinger off Kershaw Sunday, he'll likely be lifting the trophy.The sneaky bet here might be Price, however.If he posts another excellent start and wins his second game of the series, then how can you not give the MVP to him? The only way is if someone has a Reggie Jackson-esque game and delivers a few home runs and a bunch of runs batted in.On the Dodgers' side, infielder Max Muncy at 30-1 is an intriguing bet if you think L.A. can come back, if only for his game-ending home run in the Dodgers' 18-inning marathon victory over the Red Sox on Friday night. Muncy has a head start on his teammates in that regard, as he helped keep the Dodgers' hopes alive.Those hopes are bleak right now, however, as L.A. needs to win three straight (including two in Boston) to take the World Series. Such a comeback wouldn't be unprecedented, however, as the Chicago Cubs came back from down 3-1 against the Cleveland Indians with a home victory before two road wins in the 2016 World Series.
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