Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
After his worst outing of the season, Clayton Kershaw was looking to rebound and provide length for a Los Angeles Dodgers bullpen that was short on rested relievers.
He did just that, throwing seven innings while giving up just one run to the Milwaukee Brewers. Kershaw only allowed five hits while walking none and striking out eight.
In his previous outing, Kershaw walked five hitters, which he considered unacceptable, so once again limiting his walks helped him pitch deep into the game.
Overall, the southpaw was happy with his command and thankful he was able to give the Dodgers a much-needed lengthy start, he said on SportsNet LA:
“Overall, just better fastball command. That’s kind of the way it all started for me. I was able to kind of put the ball on both sides of the plate, which is definitely helpful. Obviously the way Noah had to come out of the game, the bullpen had to cover eight (innings), so it was important to get deep in the game. Thankful I got through seven, and the guys started swinging the bats really good towards the middle innings, so just tried to make it hold up.”
On Tuesday night, Noah Syndergaard was only able to throw one inning before leaving the game with a cut on his right index finger. That required the bullpen to cover eight innings with only Wander Suero not entering the game.
For Kershaw, it didn’t change his approach entering his start in the series finale because he’s always trying to pitch deep into a game:
“It doesn’t change the approach, but I do think there’s obviously added emphasis to get deeper in games when your bullpen is a little bit overworked and coming off a night game, there’s a lot of factors there. It was important for me to get to seven today, and so I’m glad I did. Having Suero finish it out with two was huge to give the rest of the guys a break with the off day before San Diego again. I think there were a lot of factors why seven was important today.”
Kershaw threw 92 pitches with 70 of them for strikes, which is a great way to keep the pitch count down, but he also received some help from the defense as they turned two double plays:
“Double plays are huge, obviously. Two outs with one pitch, that’s a good way to do it. It’s hard to induce those, especially for a guy who doesn’t throw a lot of sinkers. But guys turned some good double plays for me. Miggy made some good plays. That was huge.”
Following Kershaw, Suero pitched two shutout innings to close out the 8-1 victory, which gave the Dodgers pitching staff an important day of rest with one more day off before coming back home to face the San Diego Padres.
Clayton Kershaw didn’t blame Padres
When the San Diego Padre defeated Kershaw and the Dodgers in the series opener at Petco Park, their video board displayed mocked up photo of the left-hander crying. The Padres drew some criticism for their decision, but Kershaw simply said he needed to pitch better in order to avoid being subjected to that type of trolling.
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