Dodgers vs. Braves, NLDS Game 1 GIF recap: Kershaw Ks the Braves

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The Dodgers got a dominant outing from Clayton Kershaw, a home run from Adrian Gonzalez and big hits from players up and down the line up to draw first blood in the NLDS.

The Dodgers took a 1-0 lead on the Braves in the NLDS with a 6-1 win on Thursday behind a 12-strikeout gem from Clayton Kershaw and contributions from the bulk of their lineup on offense.

Rookie Yasiel Puig wasted no time drawing the postseason spotlight in his direction. The Dodgers' young Cuban sensation got the first L.A. hit and scored the Dodgers' first run  thanks to some aggressive base running in the second inning. He also flashed the leather early with an inning-ending double in the bottom of that frame.

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The Braves defense was nearly as effective. A.J. Ellis took advantage of a diving miss by Evan Gattis to driving the Dodgers second run of the game.

Kris Medlen can't blame all of his struggles in the game on his defense, however. The Braves starter allowed five runs in four innings of work, giving up nine hits. This shot from Adrian Gonzalez in the third inning is particularly difficult to defend against.

Kershaw took his defense out of the equation in very different way. The Dodgers ace struck out 12 and allowed just three hits over seven innings. It wasn't all smooth sailing for Kershaw, however. It took him 124 pitches to get through those innings, the third highest pitch count of his career. He lost control of the strike zone in the third inning and and again in the fourth. He found it in the fifth, however and he was straight-up nasty from that point on.

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B.J. Upton's reaction there basically says it all. With the best pitcher in baseball throwing his best stuff, there isn't much to do but head back to the dugout and try again tomorrow.

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