Hyun-Jin Ryu

Dodgers starter Hyun-Jin Ryu celebrates his final strikeout during the seventh inning of the Dodgers' 3-0 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 3 of the National League Championship Series on Monday. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times / October 14, 2013)

Truth is, the Dodgers could not be certain what to expect when Hyun-Jin Ryu took the mound to start Game 3. Not after his disastrous previous outing in the playoffs, and then there was the concern he was hiding an injury.

They just knew they needed a strong start from Ryu to keep the Dodgers from looking at an 0-3 hole in the National League Championship Series.

Ryu not only gave them a strong outing, he gave them the outing of his life, holding the Cardinals scoreless in his seven innings as the Dodgers took Game 3 with a 3-0 victory Monday at Dodger Stadium to get back in the series.

Ryu no-hit the Cardinals through the first four innings, and gave up only three hits on the night. He struck out four and walked one.

BOX SCORE: Dodgers 3, Cardinals 0

This was a long way from the left-hander who was chased after three innings in his divisional start against the Atlanta Braves.

The victory leaves the Dodgers down two games to one in the best-of-seven series. Game 4 is scheduled Tuesday here at 5 p.m. PT.

The Dodgers got a lift when Hanley Ramirez (cracked rib) and Andre Ethier (ankle) gutted out injuries to return to the lineup.

The Dodgers scored twice off Adam Wainwright in the second on a RBI double by Adrian Gonzalez and RBI triple by Yasiel Puig. They added one more in the ninth on a run-scoring single by Ramirez.

Here is an inning-by-inning recap of Game 3 of the NLCS:

Dodgers 3, Cardinals 0 (final):

Kenley Jansen picked up the save and completed the shutout, retiring the Cardinals in order.

The Cards finished with just three hits.

Dodgers 3, Cardinals 0 (end of eighth):

The Dodgers added one more against the Cardinals' bullpen. Carl Crawford singled with one out and the Cardinals went to reliever Seth Maness. Mark Ellis singled Crawford to second and then Hanley Ramirez dunked a little bloop hit in shallow center.

Crawford, showing some Yasiel Puig in him, rounded third and head home as second baseman Kolten Wong fielded the ball and fired to relay man Daniel Descalso. He threw a strike to the plate, but Crawford just slid under Yadier Molina's tag.

Dodgers 2, Cardinals 0 (middle of eighth):

Brian Wilson took over for Hyun-Jin Ryu to start the inning and immediately gave up a leadoff single to Jon Jay. One of those nervous Wilson outings?

Nope, Wilson got the next three consecutive Cardinals, including two looking at called strike threes.

The Dodgers now have it set up for Kenley Jansen to save it in the ninth.