The Los Angeles Dodgers staved off elimination on Thursday night with an 11-2 rout of the Atlanta Braves in Game 5 of the NLCS to make it a 3-2 series deficit. It wasn’t all good news, however. Whether or not they force a Game 7 or make yet another World Series appearance, relief pitcher Joe Kelly won’t be taking the mound again in the 2021 postseason.
Kelly is the latest in a string of key Dodgers players to go down with season-ending injuries. Two-time All-Star infielders Max Muncy and Justin Turner have hit the shelf, as has southpaw ace Clayton Kershaw.
Playing in his 10th MLB season, and third with the Dodgers, Kelly went 2-0 with a pair of saves and a 2.86 ERA and 0.97 WHIP this year. The two-time World Series champion flamethrower struck out 50 batters in 44 innings this season and was one of the pieces of the L.A. bullpen bridge to closer Kenley Jansen.
This October, Kelly had pitched in seven of the team’s 11 playoff games, posting 1-0 mark with a 5.06 ERA and 1.13 WHIP across 5 1/3 innings.
Game 6 between the Dodgers and Braves is scheduled to begin at 5:08 p.m. ET on Saturday.
Victor Barbosa is a passionate follower of MLB, the NBA and NFL, with a specific interest in the Boston-area teams. As a 90s kid, he knows how spoiled he’s been, particularly with the BoSox run of championships (he grew up with a dog named Nomar and a cat named Big Papi). Now he lives with his fiancee and two pups (Hershey and Mosby) outside of Albany, NY. Follow Victor on Twitter at @vbarbosa1127.
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