The Dodgers defeated the St. Louis Cardinals 3-1 at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday night, and will look for the series sweep on Wednesday’s YouTube exclusive game.
Clayton Kershaw delivered a vintage performance tossing 7 innings and allowing only 4 hits, 1 walk and a run with striking out 9. On what was likely his “last batter,” per Dave Roberts, Kershaw was saved on an electric play in right field by Joc Pederson, ending a threat for the Cardinals.
Joc Speederson. pic.twitter.com/fAONpVas6a
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) August 7, 2019
After the game, the Dodger manager had applauded Kershaw’s effort.
"That was probably his [Kershaw's] last hitter so for Joc to make that play was big."
— SportsNet LA (@SportsNetLA) August 7, 2019
Very pleased, early it just seemed like once that third inning, he just kind of, got into a rhythm, and his tempo picked up, and he was really good.
He started going a little more arm side, slider was really good, had the depth, actually seemed like he changed speeds on the slider. There was an 87 in there, there was an 83, so it was just a little different velocity with the slider, but really good depth, and just kind of the front to back tonight, really good.
Just efficient and he just really corralled that first couple of innings, that he just didn’t seem like he was in sync.
As Roberts alluded to, Kershaw did not start out particularly in sync as he was searching for his slider. Doc adds his thoughts.
I don’t recall exactly when during the game, but there was a point where — and typically Clayton throws it [the slider] one velocity — but some time in the middle innings he just really was shaping it, and he just really got into a groove and just had that feel for the slider.
And even in the 6th and 7th inning, the curveball was really good.
Kenley Jansen came in and earned save number 26 on the season, career save number 294 — as Kershaw earned his 11th win of the season.
After going 9-5 in 2018, Clayton is now 11-2 with a 2.77 ERA in 2019 as he continues to adapt to his reduced velocity with a new way to dominate.