Game 1 of the National League Division Series between the New York Mets and the Los Angeles Dodgers is now complete. On the back of a dominant pitching performance by young Jacob deGrom, the Mets were able to steal game one from the Dodgers and Clayton Kershaw by a score of 3-1.
In a series that was expected to be filled with great pitching matchups, game one between Jacob deGrom and Clayton Kershaw certainly did not disappoint. In what was hyped as the best pitching matchup of the postseason, and perhaps one of the best pitching match ups of the entire season, deGrom faced off against perennial Cy Young candidate, Clayton Kershaw.
With a combined thirteen strikeouts through the first three innings, both pitchers were cruising early on in the game. The top of the fourth would be the inning when the Mets finally broke through against the Dodgers ace when left-handed hitting Daniel Murphy got a fastball from Kershaw and drove it deep over the right field fence to give the Mets the 1-0 lead. Kershaw giving up home runs is already a rarity but Kershaw giving up home runs to left-handed hitters is almost an impossibility.
deGrom followed in the bottom of the fourth by getting himself in a jam with runners on first and second with no outs. deGrom got rookie Joc Pederson to fly out for the second out and then faced Clayton Kershaw for the second time with two runners on and two outs. Kershaw put a drive into a ball to deep center field but Yoenis Cespedes was able to get to it before it fell.
Both pitchers cruised through the fifth inning with Kershaw collecting his tenth and eleventh strikeouts while deGrom finished the fifth with ten strikeouts. After Yoenis Cespedes flew out to the warning track in left field to begin the sixth inning, Kershaw made quick work of Daniel Murphy and Travis d’Arnaud, getting a fly out and ground out, for his first one two three inning of the game. After Adrian Gonzalez just missed a home run on a foul ball to right field, deGrom struck him out and then got the Mets in order to end the sixth inning.
After Clayton Kershaw gave up a leadoff walk to begin the seventh inning, he walked a second batter putting runners at first and second with one out. Jacob deGrom was up next and he sacrificed the runners over putting runners and 2nd and 3rd with two outs for Curtis Granderson, who had two out of the four Mets hits up until that point and was the only Mets starter to not strikeout against Kershaw.
Kershaw would walk Curtis Granderson, loading the bases with two outs. Kershaw was removed from the game at this point in favor of right-hander Pedro Baez, who gave up a two run single to David Wright, breaking open the game for the New York Mets. Baez would follow with a strikeout of Yoenis Cespedes to avoid further damage.
Jacob deGrom finished with thirteen strikeouts over seven shutout innings for the New York Mets in his postseason debut. The Mets bullpen came on in relief with Tyler Clippard giving up a run in two thirds of an inning before Jeurys Familia closed the game out with an inning and a third save to get deGrom and the Mets the surprise game one victory. The Mets and Dodgers will come back for game two at Dodger Stadium on Saturday night with Noah Syndergaard facing off against Zack Greinke.