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26/01/2019 6:38 am  
Jonathan Daniel/Getty ImagesThe Los Angeles Dodgers are heading to the World Series after beatingtheMilwaukee Brewers 5-1 in Game 7 of the National League Championship Series at Miller Park on Saturday.Cody Bellinger gave the Dodgers a lead with a two-run home run in the second inning Curtis Granderson Jersey , and Yasiel Puig provided breathing room with a three-run shot in the sixth. Walker Buehler allowed just one run while striking out seven in 4.2 frames for Los Angeles.Christian Yelich homered for Milwaukee.Walker Buehler Proves to Be Big-Game PitcherPitching a Game 7 with a trip to the World Series on the line has the potential to rattle a hurler.After Saturday's result, it seems the 24-year-old Buehler has ice in his veins.After going 8-5 with a 2.62 ERA in 24 games as a rookie, Buehler got roughed up in his first few playoff starts. Control problems got the best of him in his postseason debut, as he issued three walks in an inning and then allowed a grand slam against the Atlanta Braves in Game 3 of the National League Division Series. He settled in after that, finishing with seven strikeouts and two hits allowed in five innings, but the damage had been done.In his next start, Game 3 of the NLCS, Buehler gave Los Angeles six innings of two-run baseball before he surrendered a two-run shot in the seventh. Then again, his offense gave him no support in that 4-0 loss.It would've been understandable for Dodgers skipper Dave Roberts to have had concerns about Buehler in an elimination game, given how the rookie's first two postseason outings went. However, the right-hander has proved he can come up big.Buehler got the ball as the Dodgers battled the Colorado Rockies for the NL West crown in Game No. 163earlier this month. All he did was take a no-hitter into the sixth on his way to throwing 6.2 innings of one-hit shutout baseball to help his team win the division and avoid the Wild Card Game.Saturday night's contest didn't start smoothly, as he allowed a first-inning home run to possible NL MVP Christian Yelich. However, he subsequently kept the Brewers off the board until he exited with two outs in the fifth inning.Los Angeles Dodgers Dodgers98 mph. 馃敟 iUAe175j4mGiven that it was just a one-run difference while Buehler was in the game, he had zero margin for error鈥攁nd he came up clutch. Roberts had a short leash, but it marked the second time Buehler has answered the call in a win-or-else scenario.Regardless of the postseason narrative surrounding Clayton Kershaw, the three-time Cy Young Award winner will anchor the team's World Series rotation. The Dodgers will need more than just Kershaw , though, to take down the Boston Red Sox.Hyun-Jin Ryu was solid in each of his first two postseason starts, and Rich Hill provided quality, albeit short, outings as well.In Buehler, Los Angeles has a right-hander who could make life hard on right-handed Boston stars J.D. Martinez and Mookie Betts. Not only that, but Buehler has also shown Roberts that he doesn't always let the moment get to him. Brewers' Dependance on Bullpen Proves CostlyMilwaukee's relieversrankedsecond in the National League in ERA. However, the team's bullpen dependance caught up to it.Jhoulys Chacin gave the Brewers a solid No. 1 option in October, as he allowed just one run on seven hits in 16 innings over three starts, including the one-game playoff for the NL Central title. Wade Miley also provided quality outings, allowing just two runs in 14.2 frames.Although Chacin and Miley each gave his team a chance to win, neither completed six innings in any October start. Not only that, but Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell also opted for bullpen games at timesbecause of the lack of rotation depth. As a result, the relievers had to eat a lot of innings after having already thrown the fifth-most regular-season frames.Most notably,Jeremy Jeffress had a rough playoff run after a stellar year. The 31-year-old posted a 1.29 ERA in 76.2 innings over 73 appearances, making his first All-Star team. However Yangervis Solarte Jersey , he allowed six runs in nine playoff innings.The right-hander pitched in eight of the team's 10 postseason games and allowed multiple hits in an outing seven times.Jeffress was not the only Brewers reliever to be called upon frequently during this postseason, though. Five relievers made six-plus appearances. Of that group,Corbin Burnes (30) was the only one who failed to pitch in at least 55 games during the year.Utilizing a shutdown bullpen got the Brewers to this point, so it's hard to blame Counsell for sticking with what worked. They would have benefited from less usage of their relievers for when the pressure turned up, though. Dodgers Can Match Red Sox Offense with Timely Big HitsThere aren't many teams that can match Boston's offensive firepower, but Los Angeles has a formidable lineup.The Dodgersrankedsecond only to the record-setting New York Yankees with 235 dingers. They had10players reach double digits, with seven mashing at least 20 apiece. Home Run Derby contestant Max Muncy led with 35.While power can help pile up wins during the year, the postseason is all about timely hitting. And Los Angeles proved to be more than capable of that.Miller Park was rocking early after Yelich homered in the bottom of the first. However, the Dodgers silenced the crowd with a leadoff single in the top of the second followed by Bellinger's blast.Later, Los Angeles put the first two on against the Milwaukee bullpen in the sixth. It appeared as though that scoring opportunity might go to waste, but Puig made sure the team capitalized by taking Jeffress deep for a trio of insurance runs:BYU鈥檚 Cosmo the Cougar Is the Next Superstar MascotJoshua Johnson Is HS Footballs Quadruple ThreatThe Champions x Queer EyeHappy 26th Birthday to OBJ 馃帀Happy Anniversary to the Cubs Curse-BreakingD-Rose Turned Back the Clock and Put Up 50Will Drake鈥檚 Favorite Teams Reverse the 6 God Curse?Sports Worlds Halloween Costumes Went HardUp Your Halloween Game with Giant Pumpkin RegattaThe Champions: Episode 6 Is ComingDubs Trolled Fergie So Hard It Became a ChallengePurdue Footballs No. 1 Fan Is Inspiring the TeamOne Road to MLB Starts with a Bottle Cap and BroomstickIts Been a Wild Month with Flyers鈥?Mascot Gritty馃専The Champions: Episode 5 馃専CP3-Rondo Blowup Was a Long Time ComingMahomes Is Showtime Off the Field TooCFBs Creative Entrances Put WWE to ShameWorld Pole Climbing Championships Are Something ElseNBA Let Players Know They Have to Cover Branded TattoosRight Arrow IconThe Dodgers' first two victories of the series came by one run apiece, and all of them finished within grand slam range.Los Angeles' .223 average for the series won't jump off the page, but the team got just enough hits in key moments to take the series.Don't forget: The Dodgers are the defending NL champs. Experience can't be undervalued, and after getting to Game 7 of the 2017 World Series, Los Angeles faces a familiar stage. Manny Machado and Matt Kemp may not have Fall Classic experience, but much of the rest of the roster , including Puig, Bellinger and Justin Turner, does. That's an advantage the Dodgers hold over the Red Sox.The Boston-Los Angeles World Series is a matchup of the postseason's two highest-scoring teams, so don't be surprised to see some fireworks at Fenway Park and Dodger Stadium in the coming weeks. What's NextFirst pitch for Game 1 of the 2018 World Series will be at Fenway Park on Tuesday, Oct. 23, at 8:09 p.m. ET. A look at what’s happening around the majors today:WE MEET AGAINNL Cy Young Award candidates Max Scherzer and Aaron Nola share the mound for the second time in five days, this time at Nola’s home park in Philadelphia. Nola (15-3, 2.13) got the better of Scherzer (16-6, 2.13) and the Nationals last Thursday in Washington, pitching eight innings with nine strikeouts in a 2-0 victory. Scherzer held the Phillies to two runs over seven innings, taking his first loss since July 2.REELING RED SOXBoston tries to end a three-game skid against Miami right-hander Jose Urena, who is returning from a suspension for hitting breakout Braves rookie Ronald Acuna Jr. with a pitch. The Red Sox were swept by the Rays over the weekend — Boston’s first sweep of the season — and have lost six of eight to drop to 90-42. They’ll turn to lefty Brian Johnson (4-3, 4.12) to end that skid.Urena (4-12, 4.50) was suspended six games by Major League Baseball after plunking Acuna on Aug. 15, though he pitched a complete game in a 12-1 win over Washington on Aug. 19 while he planned to appeal the ban. He dropped the appeal later that week.WRIGLEY SHOWDOWNMets right-hander Jacob deGrom and Cubs left-hander Cole Hamels take the mound at Wrigley Field for a matchup of two of baseball’s hottest pitchers. DeGrom, one of the leading contenders for the NL Cy Young Award Jose Bautista Jersey , has a 1.26 ERA and 50 strikeouts in 35 2/3 innings over five August starts. Hamels is 4-0 with a sparkling 0.79 ERA in five starts since he was acquired in a July 27 trade with Texas. Weather could be a factor, with thunderstorms in the forecast for the Chicago area.VETS OUT WESTThe Athletics and Astros continue a pivotal series in Houston with 34-year-old hurlers Edwin Jackson and Charlie Morton on the mound. Oakland is Jackson’s 13th team, and he’s made a big impression since signing a minor league deal on June 6. Over 11 starts, he’s 4-3 with a 2.97 ERA, though he’s given up four homers over 9 1/3 innings over his past two starts. Morton (13-3, 3.05) enjoyed a resurgence in 2017 that has continued this season, though he’s also struggled lately, allowing six runs over five innings in a 10-7 win against Seattle last time out.ROLLING RAYSTampa Bay takes an eight-game winning streak into an interleague series at Atlanta. Relief pitcher Ryne Stanek will be the Rays’ opener in the first game of the series, opposing Braves right-hander Julio Teheran. Tampa Bay is coming off a three-game sweep of the Red Sox, the first time Boston has been swept this season, and is a season-best nine games over .500 at 70-61. Despite this roll, the Rays are still nine games behind Oakland for the second AL wild card and 19 1/2 games behind the first-place Red Sox.