Los Angeles Dodgers

Dodgers Seek NLCS Rally as Series Shifts to Los Angeles

Trailing 2-0 in the NL Championship Series, the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Atlanta Braves head back to Los Angeles for Game 3.

National League Championship Series Game 2: Los Angeles Dodgers v. Atlanta Braves
Daniel Shirey/Getty Images

The Los Angeles Dodgers are hoping history does, but also does not exactly repeat itself.

During the pandemic-shortened 2020 MLB season, the Dodgers were living inside a bubble environment in Arlington, Texas. After their first two games against the Milwaukee Brewers at Dodger Stadium in the Wild Card round, the Dodgers moved to Globe Life Field for the remainder of the postseason.

After a three-game sweep of the San Diego Padres in the NLDS, the Dodgers squared off with the Atlanta Braves in the NLCS. The Dodgers dropped the first two games of that series, before winning Game 3 of that series in a blowout, 15-3.

The 2021 NLCS is a rematch of that series, and just like in 2020, the Dodgers find themselves trailing 2-0 after the first two games.

Overall, the Dodgers are hoping that history repeats itself in the sense that they win Game 3 in a rout, and ultimately advance to the World Series, where they hoisted the Commissioner's Trophy at the end of last season.

However, the Dodgers fell behind 3-1 in the NLCS last season, and with their backs against the wall, were forced to win three consecutive games in order to survive and advance. In that regard, the Dodgers are hoping they won't have to endure another miraculously comeback this year.

"We expect to win Game 3," said Dodgers' manager Dave Roberts of Tuesday's contest. "And I think that for us, we've got Walker [Buehler] going tomorrow, and we're going to do everything we can to get back in this series."

The Dodgers now have the home field advantage for the next three games of the series. Los Angeles has been dominant at home this season, and have won 17 of their last 18 games at Dodger Stadium. They also have a nine-game winning streak over the Braves at home.

The Braves have not won at Dodger Stadium since June of 2018, and have been swept in three straight regular season series as well as the two games they played in Los Angeles during the 2018 NLDS.

Overall, the Braves have lost 19 of their last 22 games at Dodger Stadium dating back to 2013.

For the Braves, they have the right man on the mound in Game 3 as they seek to take a commanding 3-0 lead and put a stranglehold on the NLCS. Morton dominated the Dodgers during the 2017 World Series when he was with the Houston Astros.

But the Dodgers beat him in Game 3 of the World Series in 2020 at Globe Life Field when he was with the Tampa Bay Rays and are hoping to do it again in Game 3 of this series.

Morton (0-1, 3.86 ERA) has the league's best curveball and expects to throw it a lot against the Dodgers.

"Maybe in a general sense it does, and I guess having seen them for a few years now with the corp that they have, the guys that they have been able to keep together over there. But when I scout these guys, I'm looking recent history," said Morton when asked about his familiarity facing the Dodgers in the postseason the last four years.

"But at the end of the day, I really have to look at those guys as individuals each time I face them because if I -- you can kind of get overwhelmed by a team, especially if they're performing really, really well, and then, so just being objective and trying to look at them as individuals, that's how I'll go about it," said Morton. "But obviously they're a great team, a lot of professional hitters, professional ball players, and a great pitching staff too."

Morton will be going against the Dodgers best big-game pitcher in Walker Buehler. Buehler (0-1, 3.38 ERA) faced Atlanta in two NLCS starts last season and had a 0.82 ERA, which included a seven-inning shutout in Game 6.

First pitch is scheduled for 2:08PM PT at Dodger Stadium on TBS.

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