Path to the NLDS: Washington (95-67) won the NL East by eight games; Los Angeles (91-71) won the NL West by four games.
In one of the most iconic performances of recent memory, Clayton Kershaw led the Dodgers past the Nationals in a deciding Game 5 that featured the trademark drama October has become known for.
"One of the best games in history," Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez said.
Kershaw pitched three times in the seven-day period the series lasted, and he came out of the bullpen to earn his first career save in Game 5. Put simply, the Dodgers lost every game in which Kershaw didn't pitch.
The series was even after the first two games, and the Nationals took a commanding lead with an 8-3 win in Game 3. They nearly advanced a day later, but Chase Utley forced the series back to Washington with a go-ahead single in the eighth -- an inning after the Dodgers' bullpen blew a three-run lead after Kershaw exited.
In Game 5, the Nationals held L.A. scoreless through six with brilliant pitching, but Joc Pederson sparked the Dodgers with a homer to lead off what wound up being a four-run seventh inning. With a one-run lead, the Dodgers went to closer Kenley Jansen in the eighth and Kershaw in the ninth, facing one of the game's best hitters, Daniel Murphy.
A popout by Murphy, followed by a strikeout by pinch-hitter Wilmer Difo, ensured that the Dodgers were on to the NLCS.