The Los Angeles Dodgers are playing their best baseball of the season at just the right time, as they are on the verge of reaching the National League Championship Series for the third consecutive year entering Game 3 of the NL Division Series Sunday against the host Atlanta Braves. The Dodgers have dominated in building a 2-0 series lead, hitting five homers and not allowing a run or a walk while receiving 15 innings from starters Hyun-Jin Ryu and Clayton Kershaw to improve to 21-9 since Sept. 1.

Joc Pederson has sparked Los Angeles' offense, belting a leadoff homer in the series opener before beginning Game 2 with a double and scoring on Manny Machado's two-run blast later in the frame as the team took a first-inning lead in each contest. "We're just excited that we got the lead early on, and we're able to feed off that," Pederson told reporters regarding an offense that has scored nine runs despite registering only 10 hits - seven for extra bases. The Braves have scored fewer than two runs in six of their last seven contests and are 0-for-6 with runners in scoring position in the series, as rookie Ronald Acuna Jr. and Ender Inciarte are the only two members of the team with more than one hit after two games. "You can't blame any one person," Atlanta manager Brian Snitker told reporters. "I mean, it's just our whole lineup is having a hard time."

TV: 8:07 p.m. ET, Fox Sports 1

PITCHING MATCHUP: Dodgers RH Walker Buehler (8-5, 2.62 ERA) vs. Braves LH Sean Newcomb (12-9, 3.90)

Buehler has been the one constant in a rotation hit hard by injuries this season, as the rookie has posted a 2.31 ERA in 23 starts (he allowed five runs in one relief appearance) while holding opposing hitters to a .185 batting average and a .531 OPS. The 24-year-old is 4-2 with a 1.55 ERA, 87 strikeouts and 41 hits allowed over 75 1/3 innings in his last 12 starts, limiting Colorado to one hit over 6 2/3 frames in the NL West tiebreaker game on Monday. Buehler defeated Atlanta at home on June 8, surrendering one run and two hits in 5 1/3 innings.

The Braves planned to start Kevin Gausman, but after seeing the Dodgers succeed against right-handers in the first two games, they decided to turn to Newcomb, who came within one strike of tossing a no-hitter versus Los Angeles on July 29. The 25-year-old struggled after that outing, giving up five or more runs four times in his next eight starts, but finished the season with 5 2/3 scoreless frames. Newcomb worked two impressive innings of relief in Game 1, allowing one hit with two strikeouts while throwing 17 of his 25 pitches for strikes.

WALK-OFFS

1. The Dodgers are the first team since the 1921 New York Yankees to open a postseason series with back-to-back shutouts.

2. Snitker told reporters during Saturday's off-day that he plans to move Inciarte into the No. 2 spot in the batting order, as 3B Johan Camargo has gone 0-for-8 in the series.

3. Los Angeles RHP Kenley Jansen gave up one hit with one strikeout during a scoreless ninth inning in Game 2.

PREDICTION: Braves 4, Dodgers 2  Bet Now

See all the MLB baseball Predictions


Team Name

AWAY
Alex Wood Pitching order:2
Batting order:5 Slot:2
Position: Reliever (RP)
Ryan Madson Pitching order:3
Batting order:5 Slot:3
Position: Reliever (RP)
Pedro Baez Pitching order:4
Batting order:5 Slot:4
Position: Reliever (RP)
Scott Alexander Pitching order:5
Batting order:7 Slot:2
Position: Reliever (RP)
Walker Buehler Pitching order:1
Batting order:9 Slot:1
Position: Starter (SP)
Chris Taylor Batting order:1 Slot:1
Position: Left Outfield (LF)
Yasmani Grandal Batting order:8 Slot:1
Position: Catcher (C)
Enrique Hernandez Batting order:7 Slot:1
Position: Second Base (2B)
Joc Pederson Batting order:1 Slot:2
Position: Pinch Hitter (PH)
Max Muncy Batting order:3 Slot:2
Position: Pinch Hitter (PH)
2nd Position: (1B)
Brian Dozier Batting order:5 Slot:5
Position: Pinch Hitter (PH)
2nd Position: (2B)
Yasiel Puig Batting order:9 Slot:2
Position: Pinch Hitter (PH)
2nd Position: (RF)
Cody Bellinger Batting order:6 Slot:1
Position: Center Outfield (CF)
Matt Kemp Batting order:5 Slot:1
Position: Right Outfield (RF)
Justin Turner Batting order:2 Slot:1
Position: Third Base (3B)
Manny Machado Batting order:4 Slot:1
Position: Shortstop (SS)
David Freese Batting order:3 Slot:1
Position: First Base (1B)

Team Name

HOME
Kevin Gausman Pitching order:2
Batting order:9 Slot:2
Position: Reliever (RP)
Max Fried Pitching order:3
Batting order:9 Slot:3
Position: Reliever (RP)
Touki Toussaint Pitching order:4
Batting order:9 Slot:5
Position: Reliever (RP)
Chad Sobotka Pitching order:5
Batting order:9 Slot:6
Position: Reliever (RP)
A.J. Minter Pitching order:6
Batting order:9 Slot:8
Position: Reliever (RP)
Arodys Vizcaino Pitching order:7
Batting order:9 Slot:9
Position: Reliever (RP)
Sean Newcomb Pitching order:1
Batting order:9 Slot:1
Position: Starter (SP)
Ronald Acuna Jr. Batting order:1 Slot:1
Position: Left Outfield (LF)
Kurt Suzuki Batting order:6 Slot:1
Position: Catcher (C)
Ozzie Albies Batting order:7 Slot:1
Position: Second Base (2B)
Ryan Flaherty Batting order:9 Slot:4
Position: Pinch Hitter (PH)
Lucas Duda Batting order:9 Slot:7
Position: Pinch Hitter (PH)
Ender Inciarte Batting order:2 Slot:1
Position: Center Outfield (CF)
Nick Markakis Batting order:4 Slot:1
Position: Right Outfield (RF)
Johan Camargo Batting order:5 Slot:1
Position: Third Base (3B)
Charlie Culberson Batting order:8 Slot:1
Position: Shortstop (SS)
Freddie Freeman Batting order:3 Slot:1
Position: First Base (1B)

Get Tickets

Los Angeles Dodgers at Atlanta Braves

BUY from USD 25.00

Average: USD 143.00 Highest: USD 1032.00 BUY from USD 25.00

Los Angeles Dodgers at Atlanta Braves

BUY from USD 25.00

Average: USD 168.00 Highest: USD 873.00 BUY from USD 25.00

Los Angeles Dodgers at Atlanta Braves

BUY from USD 20.00

Average: USD 104.00 Highest: USD 1152.00 BUY from USD 20.00

Comment about dodgers vs braves preview and predictions