Joe Kelly allowed a two-run home run by Freddie Freeman in the first inning and left shortly after due to a stiffness problem in the right bicep.
It was not exactly what the Los Angeles Dodgers expected when they entrusted Kelly with the responsibility of opening Game 5 against the Atlanta Braves in the National League Championship Series on Thursday.
Pilot Dave Roberts said the right-hander would go first to the mound in a game in which the Dodgers would rely only on relievers. Los Angeles is trailing 3-1 and is on the brink of elimination.
After Freeman’s hit, Adam Duvall reached the batter’s cage and was placed on a 2-2 count, when catcher Will Smith came to the mound.
The pitching coach Mark Prior and manager Dave Roberts joined them and Kelly left, after covering two-thirds of an inning. and make 28 throws.
Evan Phillips came to the relief and struck out Duvall to end the first entry. Atlanta had taken a 2-0 lead.
Ozzie Albies singled with one out before Freeman’s home run.
Kelly had worked a total of two 1/3 innings against Atlanta in the series. not allowing runs.