Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The Los Angeles Dodgers have played poor baseball throughout June as they entered their series against the Los Angeles Angels with a 5-10 record during the month. However, they won back-to-back games to sweep the Freeway Series.
Both of their wins were 2-0 victories with strong pitching performances from Clayton Kershaw and the bullpen. Kershaw threw seven scoreless innings before Caleb Ferguson and Evan Phillips combined for two perfect frames on Tuesday. Then the Dodgers bullpen combined to pitch nine scoreless innings the following day, led by two no-hit innings from Brusdar Graterol as an opener.
It marked the 14th consecutive season the Dodgers have won with back-to-back shutouts, which tied them with the New York Yankees (1951-1964) for the longest such streak in baseball history.
The @Dodgers have recorded back-to-back shutouts at least once in each of the last 14 seasons dating back to 2010, tied for the longest such streak in MLB history.
The Yankees had back-to-back shutouts in every season between 1951 and 1964. pic.twitter.com/4Ks29mA2Zp
— OptaSTATS (@OptaSTATS) June 22, 2023
The Dodgers’ streak began during the 2010 season when they shut out the Arizona Diamondbacks on June 1 and 2, with 1-0 victories each day. That was the first of two times they accomplished consecutive shutout victories during the 2010 season, as they also did so against San Francisco Giants on July 21 (2-0) and New York Mets on July 22 (2-0).
Last year, the Dodgers’ back-to-back shutouts came near the end of the season against the Diamondbacks on September 12 and 13, winning those games 6-0 and 4-0, respectively. The starting pitchers for the wins were Kershaw and Tyler Anderson.
During the 2021 season, the Dodgers’ back-to-back shutouts wins early with an off day in between. The first was against the Washington Nationals on April 11, when Kershaw outdueled future teammate Max Scherzer in a 3-0 victory, and the second came on April 13 in a 7-0 victory over the Colorado Rockies.
The 2020 season was only 60 games, but the Dodgers were still able to accomplish it on August 27 during a doubleheader against the Giants. L.A. won the first game 7-0 and followed with a 2-0 win later in the day, but both were seven-inning contests due to the health and safety protocols in place for the season.
Dodgers bullpen held meetings to address ongoing struggles
Dodgers relief pitchers have thrown 275 innings this year, posting a 5.01 ERA and 4.25 FIP. Opponents are also batting .256 off Dodgers relievers, which is the second-highest mark in baseball, only slightly behind the Nationals that have allowed a .257 average.
Throughout June, the results have been even worse. The Dodgers’ 6.57 bullpen ERA is the highest in baseball and they have more blown saves (three) than converted opportunities (two).
With those results, the Dodgers relief pitchers held meetings recently to address what their issues have been. “But it’s nothing crazy,” Caleb Ferguson said of the discussions.
“There was not crazy talks, it was more opening the floor and let’s talk about how everybody is feeling. When you’re trying to hold all of that in over the course of 162 games, things can go haywire sometimes. So just getting everybody back together and reminding them as a group we’re really good. I think it’s been good.”
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