Sports

The one-sided head-to-head playoff history of the Dodgers and St. Louis Cardinals


Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw comes out of the game against the Cardinals in game 6 of the NLCS
Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw leaves Game 6 of the 2013 NLCS against the St. Louis Cardinals. He gave up three runs in the third and four more in the fifth, and the Cardinals advanced to the World Series after a 9-0 win. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

The Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis Cardinals have faced each other in the postseason five times since the start of the league playoffs in 1969, and history has not been kind to the Dodgers, who have lost four of those meetings, most recently a 3-1 defeat in the 2014 National League Division Series.

Here’s the story of the five previous October showdowns:

1985 NLCS — St. Louis 4, Dodgers 2

Dodgers pitcher Orel Hershiser slides across home plate in the second inning of Game 2 of the NLCS.

Dodgers pitcher Orel Hershiser slides across home plate in the second inning of Game 2 of the NLCS next to teammate Bill Madlock and Cardinals catcher is Darrell Porter. (Associated Press)

Dodgers’ main starters:

C-Mike Scioscia

1B-Greg Brock

2B-Steve Sax

3B-Bill Madlock

SS-Mariano Duncan

LF-Pedro Guerrero

CF-Ken Landreaux

RF-Mike Marshall

Cardinals’ main starters:

C-Darrell Porter

1B-Jack Clark

2B-Tom Herr

3B-Terry Pendleton

SS-Ozzie Smith

LF-Vince Coleman

CF-Willie McGee

RF-Andy Van Slyke

Game 1 (at Dodgers 4. St. Louis 1): The Dodgers knock Cardinals starter John Tudor out of the game in the sixth inning, with the biggest blow being Steve Sax‘s double. Fernando Valenzuela gives up one run in 6.1 innings and Tom Niedenfuer gets an eight-out save.

Game 2 (at Dodgers 8, St. Louis 2): Bill Madlock and Greg Brock each drive in two runs and Orel Hershiser goes all the way for the Dodgers in victory.

Game 3 (at St. Louis 4, Dodgers 2): Cardinals score all their runs off of Bob Welch in the first two innings.

Game 4 (at St. Louis 12, Dodgers 2): The Cardinals score nine runs off Jerry Reuss and Rick Honeycutt in the second inning and Tito Landrum and Terry Pendleton each have three RBIs in the game.

Game 5 (at St. Louis 3, Dodgers 2): Moments after a graphic is shown on TV that reads, “Ozzie Smith has never hit a home run batting left-handed,” Smith hits a home run batting left-handed in the bottom of the ninth off Niedenfuer.

Game 6 (St. Louis 7, at Dodgers 5): Jack Clark. Tom Niedenfuer. First base open. Home run. Season over.

2004 NLDS — St. Louis 3, Dodgers 1

Dodgers starting pitcher Jose Lima reacts after striking out St. Louis Cardinals' Scott Rolen during Game 3 of the 2004 NLDS.

Dodgers starting pitcher Jose Lima reacts after striking out St. Louis Cardinals’ Scott Rolen during Game 3 of the 2004 NLDS. (Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

Dodgers’ main starters:

C-Brent Mayne

1B-Shawn Green

2B-Alex Cora

3B-Adrian Beltre

SS-Cesar Izturis

LF-Jayson Werth

CF-Steve Finley

RF-Milton Bradley

Cardinals’ main starters:

C-Mike Matheny

1B-Albert Pujols

2B-Tony Womack

3B-Scott Rolen

SS-Edgar Renteria

LF-Reggie Sanders

CF-Jim Edmonds

RF-Larry Walker

Game 1 (at St. Louis 8, Dodgers 3): The Cardinals score six runs in three innings off Odalis Perez, including home runs by Jim Edmonds and Albert Pujols.

Game 2 (at St. Louis 8, Dodgers 3): Jeff Weaver gives up six runs and the Cardinals cruise to an easy win.

Game 3 (at Dodgers 4, St. Louis 0): Jose Lima pitches a five-hitter as the Dodgers win their first playoff game since 1988.

Game 4 (St. Louis 6, at Dodgers 2): Pujols has the key blow, a three-run home run in the top of the fifth off of Wilson Alvarez.

2009 NLDS — Dodgers 3, St. Louis 0

Dodgers left fielder Manny Ramirez runs after getting a hit during Game 3 in the 2009 NLDS.

Dodgers left fielder Manny Ramirez runs after getting a hit during Game 3 in the 2009 NLDS. (Darron Cummings / Associated Press)

Dodgers’ main starters:

C- Russell Martin

1B-James Loney

2B-Ronnie Belliard

3B-Casey Blake

SS-Rafael Furcal

LF-Manny Ramirez

CF-Matt Kemp

RF-Andre Ethier

Cardinals’ main starters:

C-Yadier Molina

1B-Albert Pujols

2B-Skip Schumaker

3B-Mark DeRosa

SS-Brendan Ryan

LF-Matt Holliday

CF-Colby Rasmus

RF-Ryan Ludwick

Game 1 (at Dodgers 5, St. Louis 3): Matt Kemp hits a two-run homer in the first and the Dodgers also get RBIs from Rafael Furcal, Casey Blake and Russell Martin.

Game 2 (at Dodgers 3, St. Louis 2): Dodgers rallied with two runs in the ninth inning when left fielder Matt Holliday lost a two-out liner hit by James Loney in the lights and dropped the ball for an error.

Game 3 (Dodgers 5, at St. Louis 1): Dodgers jumped out to a 5-0 lead thanks in part to a two-run homer by Andre Ethier.

2013 NLCS — St. Louis 4, Dodgers 2

Dodgers' Mark Ellis walks away after striking out to end Game 6 of the 2013 NLCS against the St. Louis Cardinals.

Dodgers’ Mark Ellis walks away after striking out to end Game 6 of the 2013 NLCS against the St. Louis Cardinals. (David J. Phillip / Associated Press)

Dodgers’ main starters

C-A.J. Ellis

1B-Adrian Gonzalez

2B-Mark Ellis

3B-Juan Uribe

SS-Hanley Ramirez

LF-Carl Crawford

CF-Andre Ethier

RF-Yasiel Puig

Cardinals’ main starters

C-Yadier Molina

1B-Matt Adams

2B-Matt Carpenter

3B-David Freese

SS-Pete Kozma

LF-Matt Holliday

CF-Jon Jay

RF-Carlos Beltran

Game 1 (at St. Louis 3, Dodgers 2, 13 inn.): Chris Withrow gives up a single and a walk in the bottom of the 13th, giving way to Kenley Jansen, who gives up a game-winning single by Carlos Beltran. This is the game where Cardinals starter Joe Kelly hit Hanley Ramirez in the ribs with a pitch, injuring Ramirez and curtailing his effectiveness (he went two for 15) the rest of the series.

Game 2 (at St. Louis 1, Dodgers 0): The Cardinals score an unearned run in the fifth inning off of Clayton Kershaw and five Cardinal pitchers make it hold up.

Game 3 (at Dodgers 3, St. Louis 0): The Dodgers get RBIs from Adrian Gonzalez, Yasiel Puig and Hanley Ramirez while Hyun-jin Ryu (seven innings), Brian Wilson (one) and Jansen (one) shut out the Cardinals.

Game 4 (St. Louis 4, at Dodgers 2): The Cardinals score three runs in the top of the fourth off Ricky Nolasco, with the key blow a two-run homer by Matt Holliday.

Game 5 (at Dodgers 6, St. Louis 4): The Dodgers score four times in five innings against Kelly, with key homers by Gonzalez and Carl Crawford. Jansen gives up two runs in the ninth to make the game close.

Game 6 (at St. Louis 9, Dodgers 0): This is the game that advanced the persistent narrative that Kershaw was an ineffective postseason pitcher. He gave up three runs in the third and four more in the fifth as the Cardinals advanced to the World Series in a laugher.

2014 NLDS — St. Louis 3, Dodgers 1

St. Louis Cardinals players celebrate after their 3-2 win over Los Angeles Dodgers in Game 4 of the 2014 NLDS.

St. Louis Cardinals players celebrate after their 3-2 win over Los Angeles Dodgers in Game 4 of the 2014 NLDS. (Charles Rex Arbogast / Associated Press)

Dodgers’ main starters:

C-A.J. Ellis

1B-Adrian Gonzalez

2B-Dee Gordon

3B-Juan Uribe

SS-Hanley Ramirez

LF-Carl Crawford

CF-Yasiel Puig

RF-Matt Kemp

Cardinals’ main starters:

C-Yadier Molina

1B-Matt Adams

2B-Kolten Wong

3B-Matt Carpenter

SS-Jhonny Peralta

LF-Matt Holliday

CF-Jon Jay

RF-Randal Grichuk

Game 1 (St. Louis 10, at Dodgers 9): The tone for the series was set in Game 1. Leading, 6-1, Clayton Kershaw couldn’t get out of the seventh inning as the Cardinals scored eight times.

Game 2 (at Dodgers 3, St. Louis 2): After the Cardinals tied the score in the top of the eighth off of J.P. Howell, Matt Kemp led off the bottom of the inning with a home run off of Pat Neshek. Kenley Jansen got the final three outs for the save.

Game 3 (at St. Louis 3, Dodgers 1): Kolten Wong hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the seventh off of Scott Elbert to break a 1-1 tie.

Game 4 (at St. Louis 3, Dodgers 2): Leading, 2-0, Kershaw again couldn’t escape the seventh, with the Cardinals scoring three times. Kershaw finished the series 0-2 with a 7.82 earned-run average.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.

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