National League MLB Postseason
Jurickson Profar and Tommy Pham, glum in the dugout in the ninth inning. The Dodgers swept the Padres in the 2020 Division Series. Photo credit: Screenshot, MLB Network

The San Diego Padres’ breakout season came to an end Thursday as the Los Angeles Dodgers swept their National League West division rivals in their best-of-five NL Division Series.

The Dodgers, with two big innings, cruised to a 12-3 victory, earning the right to face the Atlanta Braves in the NL Championship Series.

The Braves defeated the Florida Marlins 7-0 earlier Thursday to sweep their series.

Manager Jayce Tingler credited the Dodgers with “feasting on mistakes,” adding that his team “lost the battle in the zone, offensively and on the mound.”

“I think that’s ultimately where we got beat,” he said.

The Padres enjoyed a brief early lead, but after that the game was all Dodgers.

After the Dodgers scored in the second inning to make it 1-0, the Padres answered with two runs of their own.

Eric Hosmer and Tommy Pham led off the bottom of the second with singles. With one out, the Padres loaded the bases after an intentional walk to Wil Myers, and the Dodgers followed with a walk to Jake Cronenworth to force in a run. Trent Grisham, who struggled offensively this  postseason, then came up with a single to bring Myers home.

The Dodgers, though, delivered a harsh five-run blow in the next inning, capped by designated hitter Joe Pederson’s two-run single to drive in Cody Bellinger  and A.J. Pollock, who had hit an RBI single to drive in Justin Turner.

The Dodgers cashed in both walks in the inning – to Mookie Betts and Bellinger. They added to their 6-2 lead with one run each in the fourth and fifth innings.

Dodger catcher Will Smith, with five hits, also set two records. He’s the youngest player to collect five hits in a playoff game and the first to do so in Dodger history.

The Padres scored their final run on a Dodger mistake, a balk by reliever Julio Urias in the sixth. Urias, though, kept a lock on the Friars during his five innings on the mound, at one point sitting down 10 batters in a row.

Urias was credited with the win, while starter Adrian Morejon took the loss. After Morejon, the Padres sent 10 other pitchers to the mound – another postseason record – continuing their streak of heavy reliance on the bullpen during the series, due to the loss of starters Mike Clevinger and Dinelson Lamet.

The Padres couldn’t get much going on offense either, as stars Fernando Tatis Jr. and Manny Machado combined for two hits in the game. In the series, they had four hits in 23 at-bats.

Eric Hosmer and Wil Myers didn’t fare any better; Hosmer had two hits in 13 at-bats, while Myers recorded one in 10 at-bats.

For Tatis, though, the season was the start of something special, even if the end hurt.

“I feel like this is a growing pain,” he told XTRA 1360. “We’re just getting started.”

The games took place in Arlington’s Globe Life Field as part of baseball’s plan to use neutral sites in the playoffs during the pandemic. The Dodgers will face the Braves in Arlington beginning Monday.

– Staff reports