Dodgers Team News

Dodgers Ace Clayton Kershaw Somehow Just Keeps Getting Better

Dodgers LHP Clayton Kershaw is off to a dominant start this 2023 season. Through six starts, Kershaw is 5-1 with a 1.89 ERA, a 0.76 WHIP, a .175 batting average against and 41 strikeouts. 

Those numbers would be good for anyone, but the fact that he’s doing this all as a 35-year-old pitcher in his 16th season in the MLB is just incredible.

After Saturday’s game, in which Kershaw threw seven shutout innings, allowing just two hits while striking out nine, his manager had some very high praise for him. Dave Roberts said that the Dodgers longtime ace just keeps getting better.

“Tonight was his best [of the season] for me as far as stuff from start to finish,” Roberts said. “I thought his fastball glove-side, arm-side, the lateness of the curveball was as good as I’ve seen. The slider … the way he tunneled [pitches] was exceptional. That’s as good a team as you’re going to see against left-handed pitching, and the way he dominated those guys was impressive.”

Mike DiGiovanna, Los Angeles Times

Kershaw was the best pitcher on the Dodgers year after year over the prime of his career. He was one of, if not, the best pitcher in baseball for many of those years, and continued to work as the ace of his staff.

However, with the emergence of Walker Buehler, and then the recent emergence of Julio Urias, it felt like the torch was finally being passed. But clearly, the nine-time All-Star said ‘not just yet.’

Kershaw has been sensational this season, and looks as dominant (and healthy) as ever.

In Saturday’s game, he had a 36 CSW percentage and 19 swings-and-misses. And that famous Cooperstown Curveball was as nasty as ever.

While Kershaw was dominant last year, and even started the All-Star game for the first time in his career, this year, he seems to have (somehow) taken his game to a new level. He looks as dominant as he was during his Cy Young seasons, and is giving the Dodgers some much-needed consistent starts in an otherwise shaky rotation.

At 35 years old, we know Kershaw isn’t going to be healthy for a full season. He’s due to spend some time on the injured list, as his back is likely to act up at some point.

However, if he can limit it to minor injuries, and continue to pitch at this dominant level, he could reassert himself as one of baseball’s premier pitchers.

At this point, he’s an early candidate for the National League Cy Young Award. Who saw that coming in Year 16?

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Noah Camras

Noah is an Editor for Dodgers Nation. He graduated from USC in 2022 with a B.A. in Journalism and minor in Sports Media Studies. He's been a Dodger fan his whole life, and his all-time favorite Dodgers are Matt Kemp and Russell Martin.

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