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Dodgers shut out Nationals 6-0 in NLDS Game 1 victory

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Walker Buehler tossed six shutout innings against the Nationals, leading his team to 6-0 victory in Game 1 of the NLDS on Thursday night in Los Angeles. The bullpen backed him up with three shutout innings of their own, giving the Dodgers a 1-0 series lead.

The Dodgers got on the board early, taking advantage of an uncharacteristically wild Patrick Corbin, who issued four walks and forced in a run. The Dodgers plated another run in the fifth inning thanks to a fielding error by Howie Kendrick that would have otherwise ended the inning. In the bottom of the seventh, with Corbin out of the game, Max Muncy provided plenty of insurance with a two-run single to left field off of Fernando Rodney to make it 4-0.

Corbin ended the night having allowed two runs (one earned) on three hits and five walks with nine strikeouts over six innings.

Buehler, meanwhile, was excellent, limiting the Nationals to one hit and three walks with eight strikeouts across his six innings of work. All three walks occurred in the fourth inning.

Lefty Adam Kolarek began the seventh inning for the platoon advantage versus NL Wild Card game hero Juan Soto. Soto struck out, then Kolarek gave way to Kenta Maeda, who got the next two batters out with little issue. Maeda returned to the bump in the eighth, getting a pair of strikeouts and a routine ground out in a 1-2-3 frame.

Rookie Gavin Lux and Joc Pederson each drilled a solo home run in the eighth inning to make it 6-0.

With a six-run lead, manager Dave Roberts called on Joe Kelly to finish out the game. Kelly allowed a leadoff double to Trea Turner but worked around it, getting Adam Eaton to strike out before striking out both Anthony Rendon and Soto to end the game.

The Nationals and Dodgers will do battle again on Friday night in L.A. with first pitch scheduled for 9:37 PM ET.

Mike Trout voted 2019 American League Most Valuable Player

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The Baseball Writers Association of America voted Angels outfielder Mike Trout the Most Valuable Player in the American League for the 2019 season. He received 17 of 30 first-place votes, earning the third AL MVP Award of his career.

Trout, 28, missed the final three weeks of the season due to a foot injury, but his numbers were still strong enough to overcome the competition. He led the majors with a .438 on-base percentage and a 185 adjusted OPS, and led the AL with a .645 slugging percentage and 1.083 OPS. He also slugged 45 home runs, knocked in 104 runs, scored 110 runs, and stole 11 bases in 600 plate appearances. FanGraphs also gave him an edge over the competition in WAR at 8.6.

Trout, who also won the award in 2014 and ’16, is the third Angel to snag the hardware, joining Don Baylor (1979) and Vladimir Guerrero Sr. (2004). He is the 11th player to win three MVP awards, joining Jimmie Foxx, Joe DiMaggio, Yogi Berra, Mickey Mantle, Álex Rodríguez, Stan Musial, Roy Campanella, Mike Schmidt, Albert Pujols, and Barry Bonds. Bonds is the only player to have won the award more than three times, winning a whopping seven MVP awards.

Alex Bregman finished in a close second place followed by Marcus  Semien, DJ LeMahieu, and Xander Bogaerts. Also receiving votes were Matt Chapman, George Springer, Mookie Betts, Nelson Cruz, Gerrit Cole, Justin Verlander, Rafael Devers, Jorge Polanco, Austin Meadows, Francisco Lindor, Carlos Santana, Gleyber Torres, Eddie Rosario, José Abreu, Max Kepler, J.D. Martinez, Yoán Moncada, Charlie Morton, Matt Olson, and Jorge Soler.