Springfield’s Eaton starts winning rally for Nationals in series-clinching victory

Published: Thursday, October 10, 2019 @ 2:13 PM

The Nationals' Howie Kendrick celebrates after hitting a grand slam with teammates Anthony Rendon, back left,  Adam Eaton, right, and Juan Soto, center, in the tenth inning of game five of the National League Division Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on October 09, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry how/Getty Images
The Nationals' Howie Kendrick celebrates after hitting a grand slam with teammates Anthony Rendon, back left, Adam Eaton, right, and Juan Soto, center, in the tenth inning of game five of the National League Division Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on October 09, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)(Harry how/Getty Images)

Springfield native Adam Eaton started the winning rally Wednesday for the Washington Nationals in the 10th inning of Game 5 of the National League Division Series in Los Angeles.

» EARLIER COVERAGE: Eaton excited to make postseason debut

Eaton, a 2007 Kenton Ridge graduate who played three seasons for the Miami RedHawks, walked to lead off the inning and scored on a tie-breaking grand slam by Howie Kendrick. The Nationals beat the two-time defending National League champion Los Angeles Dodgers 7-3 to reach the National League Championship Series for the first time since the franchise moved to Washington from Montreal in 2005.

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Eaton started all five games in the series and hit .188 (3-for-16) with an RBI. He led the team with five walks and posted a .381 on-base percentage.

» HAL McCOY: Cardinals clinch series with 10-run first

This is Eaton’s first postseason experience. He was injured two years ago when the Nationals played in the NLDS.

“Expectations were high for myself on an individual level,” Eaton told reporters before Game 2. “But I think from my own standpoint I haven't been nearly as nervous as I thought I would be. Two pretty large crowds as well. Nationals really showed up and L.A. is always a light show, so to speak. So I've enjoyed it, I've really enjoyed it, but I'll enjoy it when we're hopefully winning tonight. A little more difficult to take the losses. But playoff baseball is pretty legit.”

The Nationals play the St. Louis Cardinals on the road in Game 1 of the NLCS at 8:08 p.m. Friday.