Kershaw has struggled in the postseason, especially against the Cardinals, so the decision to start him on short rest was heavily questioned. The plan seemed to be working through 6 innings, as Kershaw kept the Cardinals on the scoreboard and gave up just 1 hit.
Kershaw would allow 2 baserunners to reach in the 7th, but Dodgers manager Don Mattingly would leave him in. Mattingly has so much faith in Kershaw, and why would he? Top candidate for Cy Young, and a candidate for MVP usually would shine in these situations. But Kershaw continued to struggle in October, surrendering a go-ahead 3-run shot to Matt Adams for a 3-2 Cardinals lead.
The Dodgers' ace finished the game going 6+ innings, not getting an out in the 7th, giving up those 3 runs on 4 hits, while striking out 9. Los Angeles gave Kershaw some run support after the game remained scoreless through 5 innings. A double play ball off the bat of Matt Kemp scored the first run in the 6th, and Juan Uribe singled in another for a 2-0 L.A lead. A lead that would last 1 innings until Adams came up big for the Cards.
The Cardinals' 7th inning is what has sparked them in all 3 series wins. They completed the comeback from a 6-1 deficit in the 7th inning of Game 1 off of Kershaw at Dodger Stadium. Kolten Wong's game-winning home run in Game 3 came in the 7th, as did Matt Adams' in Game 4. Another solid outing lead St. Louis, as Shelby Miller gave up just 2 runs while pitching in to the 6th. He struck out 4, walked 3, and surrendered 5 hits. The Cardinals are heading to their 4th consecutive NLCS, going this far in the postseason all 3 years of manager Mike Matheny's tenure.