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NLDS: Max Scherzer, Nationals top Dodgers to force Game 5

By Connor Grott
1/12
NLDS: Max Scherzer, Nationals top Dodgers to force Game 5
Washington Nationals starting pitcher Max Scherzer reacts during the seventh inning of Game 4 of the NLDS against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Monday at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C. Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo

Oct. 7 (UPI) -- Max Scherzer's dominant performance and Ryan Zimmerman's three-run home run lifted the Washington Nationals to a 6-1 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Monday to force a series-deciding Game 5 in the NL Division Series.

Scherzer allowed one earned run and four hits while striking out nine across seven solid innings against the Dodgers. The ace's masterful outing prevented Los Angeles from closing out the NLDS after the Dodgers grabbed a 2-1 series lead Sunday.

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Game 5 of the best-of-five series will be Wednesday in Los Angeles. Stephen Strasburg will start for the Nationals against the Dodgers' Walker Buehler.

The Dodgers scored their lone run in the first inning after third baseman Justin Turner blasted a solo home run over the left-field wall. Washington tied the game in the third when Anthony Rendon plated Michael Taylor on a sacrifice fly.

Rendon broke the 1-1 tie in the bottom of the fifth with an RBI single to left-center field. In the same inning, the 35-year-old Zimmerman, facing Dodgers pitcher Pedro Baez, belted a three-run bomb over the wall in center field to give the Nationals a 5-1 lead.

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Rendon, who went 1-for-2 with three RBIs in the game, added an insurance run in the sixth after scoring Trea Turner on another sacrifice fly.

Whichever team advances will play the Atlanta Braves or St. Louis Cardinals in the NL Championship Series. The Braves-Cardinals series is currently even at two games apiece.

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