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Arizona Diamondbacks' Corbin Carroll gets back to third base after leading off during the fifth inning in Game 3 of the NLDS against the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Diamondbacks won 4-2 on Oct. 11, 2023, in Phoenix.Rick Scuteri/The Associated Press

The hard-hitting Arizona Diamondbacks rode a record-setting barrage of solo homers in the third inning to a 4-2 win in Game 3 of the NL Division Series on Wednesday night, sweeping the 100-win Los Angeles Dodgers out of the playoffs.

The D-backs return to the NL Championship Series for the first time since 2007, where they’ll face either the Phillies or Braves.

Arizona – the No. 6 seed after squeezing into the NL playoff bracket with an 84-78 record – has won all five of its games during the post-season, sweeping aside both the Brewers in a best-of-three series and the Dodgers in a best-of-five.

“It was a team effort,” Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said. “It’s about people caring about people in this organization, and that’s what stood out to me today.”

The wild-card Diamondbacks won with brawn in this one, slugging a postseason-record four homers in the third off veteran righty Lance Lynn, all solo shots from Geraldo Perdomo, Ketel Marte, Christian Walker and Gabriel Moreno.

That gave Arizona a 4-0 lead it wouldn’t relinquish.

“It’s almost unbelievable, right? I’m a fan, too, and I was looking at it thinking, what in the world is happening here?” Lovullo said.

The NL West champion Dodgers rallied for two runs in the seventh on two-out RBI singles from Chris Taylor and Kike Hernandez off side-armer Ryan Thompson, but lefty Andrew Saalfrank entered and retired Austin Barnes on a groundout.

Will Smith had a one-out single in the ninth off closer Paul Sewald, but Chris Taylor hit a flyout to deep centre in front of the 413-foot sign Hernandez flied out to left to end it.

“You look at the game, the series, they outplayed us, and there’s no other spin to it,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “As far as our clubhouse, it’s just a lot of disappointment.”

Lynn cruised through the first two innings of a scoreless game – giving no indication what was about to come.

Perdomo started the scoring with a leadoff homer, his first long ball since Aug. 13. One out later, Marte hit a 428-foot drive to right on a 1-0 cutter. With two outs, Walker pulled a 3-1 cutter to left for a 3-0 lead, drawing another roar from the Chase Field crowd.

Then came No. 4: Moreno sliced a 2-1 fastball down the line to the opposite field that right field umpire Gabe Morales called fair. But the umpires huddled and crew chief Todd Tichenor reversed the call to foul, a decision upheld by a video review.

Moreno then drove Lynn’s very next pitch – a hanging slider – 420 feet over the left-field wall, flipping his bat high in the air as he started his trot.

“The one that was really impressive for me was Gabby Moreno. He hits one foul, then he hits one fair. It’s a great moment for us,” Lovullo said.

A few moments later, a dejected Lynn handed the ball to Roberts and trudged toward the dugout.

Lynn gave up 44 homers in the regular season, the most in the majors. The previous mark of three homers in a post-season inning had been accomplished 12 times, most recently by the Dodgers against Atlanta in 2020.

D-backs rookie right-hander Brandon Pfaadt threw 4 1/3 scoreless innings, giving up two hits and striking out two.

While the D-backs thrived, the Dodgers had no answers for a third straight game. A stacked lineup with a pair of former MVPs – Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman – couldn’t make much of an impact throughout the series.

Both All-Stars struck out in the eighth against Kevin Ginkel with a runner on first. Betts finished the series 0 for 11 while Freeman was 1 for 10.

“The bottom line is that they outplayed us in every facet of the game,” Roberts said.

Dodgers changes

Roberts made a few lineup changes in advance of Game 3.

He flipped Smith and J.D. Martinez in the order, dropping Smith to fifth and moving Martinez up to third. Hernandez started in place of James Outman in centre field.

Emotional first pitch

The four sons of Arizona Diamondbacks general manager Mike Hazen threw out the ceremonial first pitch in honour of their mom Nicole Hazen, who died from brain cancer in 2022.

Hazen’s four sons are Charlie (17), John (16), Teddy (15) and Sam (13).

Nicole Hazen was diagnosed with glioblastoma in 2020 and fought the disease for more than two years. She was 45 when she died.

Roof open

It was the first playoff game at Chase Field since 2017 and the stadium’s retractable roof was open. The temperature was in the high 80s at first pitch. It was a sellout crowd of 48,175.

Up next

Arizona plays Game 1 of the NL Championship Series at Atlanta or Philadelphia on Monday. The defending NL champion Phillies hold a 2-1 lead in that best-of-five series, with Game 4 on Thursday night in Philadelphia.

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