Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts flouted conventional wisdom Tuesday in Game 3 of the National League Championship Series when he allowed Yu Darvish, staked to a 3-1 lead, to hit for himself with the bases loaded in the bottom of the sixth inning at Wrigley Field.
Roberts, 1. Conventional wisdom, 0.
Inexplicably, Darvish – a career .129 hitter with one walk in 34 regular-season plate appearances – drew himself a four-pitch walk off a terribly erratic C.J. Edwards, extending his club’s lead over the Chicago Cubs to 4-1 with the first four-pitch, bases-load walk by a pitcher in postseason history.
Darvish, a four-time All-Star, is now the first pitcher to draw a bases-loaded walk in a postseason game since Larry Christenson of the Philadelphia Phillies worked a free pass in Game 3 of the 1977 NLCS against the Dodgers, according to ESPN Stats & Info.
The walk, which forced Yasiel Puig home from third, also thrust Darvish up the all-time postseason RBI leaderboard. Now, the 31-year-old right-hander boasts as many career playoff RBIs (1) as Ted Williams and Mike Trout, and has plated more runs in the NLCS than the entire Washington Nationals franchise combined.