Kershaw, Dodgers a Day Late And a Run Short in 4-3 Loss To Giants

Clayton Kershaw

Whenever Clayton Kershaw starts at Dodger Stadium against the Giants it could be considered one of the most secure bets in baseball. Keshaw was 10-0 with a 0.65 ERA in his last ten starts at Chavez Ravine. Coming into tonight’s series opener against the Giants he was 19-8 with a 1.60 career ERA against the stupid Giants. On Monday night we saw a Kershaw that we rarely ever see. We saw the Kershaw that sucked. Well suck for Kershaw is different than any other pitcher. Kershaw “sucking” means him allowing a few runs and not pitching a shutout or striking out like 11 batters.

Tonight Kershaw was human surrendering four runs (three earned) over 6 innings as the Giants beat the Dodgers 4-3. The loss drops Kershaw to 4-2 on the season and snaps the Dodgers little four-game winning streak. Kershaw gave up 8 hits and struck out 5. Kershaw’s mound opponent Johnny Cueto limited the Dodgers to three earned runs on six hits over seven innings. He struck out 6 and walked one and improved to 4-1 on the season for San Francisco. Yeah if you thought that Cueto would have an ERA over 5 for the entire season, think again. Cueto twisted and twirled and torpedoed the Dodgers offense.

Giants    4 8 0

Dodgers 3 6 1

WP-Cueto-4-1

LP-Kershaw-4-2

SV-Law-1

HR-Pence-2-Posey-2

Kershaw just made too many mistakes tonight and the Giants were aggressive and made him pay. The Giants got to him early scoring twice in the top of the first inning before the chairs were warm. Christian Arroyo singled, and Kershaw hung a breaking ball to Hunter Pence who made him pay by depositing it into the left field pavilions to give the Giants a 2-0 lead. The Dodgers would get one back in the bottom of the first, but Pence would factor into that inning as well robbing Justin Turner of a possible home run or extra-base hit with a leaping catch against the right field wall. In that frame Andrew Toles led-off with a single and Corey Seager walked. Toles moved to third on that deep fly ball from Turner, and scored on a Yasmani Grandal grounder to make it a 2-1 game.

 

The Dodgers tied it up in the bottom of the second inning when star prospect Cody Bellinger doubled over the low wall in the right field corner. After Puig flied out and Chase Utley whiffed, Kershaw helped his own cause by fisting a single into left field to score Bellinger. The 21-year old rookie raced around third to score just ahead of the throw home. Yes he can run the bases too! This kid can do a lot.

With the score now tied the Giants immediately retook the lead in the top of the third inning when Kershaw hung another breaking ball to Buster Posey who crushed it over the fence for a solo home run. The Giants were now up 3-2. The Giants added another run in the fifth inning when Gorkys Hernandez reached on a bunt and advanced to second when Kershaw threw the ball away. Arroyo immediately singled him in to give the Giants a 4-2 lead.

Of course the Dodgers teased us by threatening and scoring another run to close the gap to 4-3. In the bottom of the seventh Adrian Gonzalez reached base on a grounder and Bellinger smartly be the shift with a well placed bunt that caused twitter to swoon for hours afterwards. After a force out, and the usual Utley whiff, pinch-hitter Chris Taylor banged a hit into left to score Bellinger and put the Dodgers within one run.

That was as close as the Dodgers would get. They would go down 1-2-3 in the eighth and ninth innings quietly to end the game. What a downer. The Dodgers also placed Hyun-jin Ryu on the disabled list with a sore hip. Right after he finally wins his first MLB game in over two years. Josh Fields was recalled from Oklahoma City. The Dodgers should be getting reinforcements by the next series in San Diego as a trio of Dodgers (Joc Pederson, Franklin Gutierrez, Logan Forsythe) are going to be activated from the disabled list. Don’t expect Bellinger to be with the club much longer. Justin Turner went 0 for 4 snapping his 16-game hitting streak.

In the meantime the Dodger’s series with the Giants continues as Matt Moore battles Alex Wood in a duel of southpaws on Tuesday night at 7:10 PM. At least the Dodgers are still above .500 (silver linings).

Cody Bellinger watch:

The wonder kid went 2 for 4 with two runs scored and raised his average to .320. He has a .993 OPS in 25 plate appearances.

Scott Andes

Scott Andes

Scott Andes: Former Co-editor of Lasorda's Lair. Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic Cheap MLB Tickets

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62 thoughts on “Kershaw, Dodgers a Day Late And a Run Short in 4-3 Loss To Giants

  1. Elfin was better than McCarthy and Cueto was better than Kershaw. It’s going to happen on occasion. In one game we got to the bullpen, in the other we didn’t.

    The good news. Bellinger. The bad news. 5 0fers out of the starting 8. And Kershaw got tagged for 2 dingers. Stuff happened and we lost to a last place club. This team can play uninspired baseball at times

    I don’t think teams are afraid of us, even with Kershaw on the mound. And tonight we face a left hander. Bring popcorn because we get to watch platoon again. I wonder if it will end differently this time. Does Gutierrez play? Who goes down?

    1. I don’t see how they can send Bellinger down, but I won’t be surprised if they do. The correct move, of course, is to have a burial at sea for Utley, and keep Bellinger. Even just as a pinch hitter, he’ll help them more than Utley. Utley is not just toast, but burned toast.

      1. Dumping Utley is a stand-alone act, already having its own merit and justifications. There is a way to keep Bellinger. Put Agon on DL and Puig and Pederson on the market. They are young enough, cheap enough, and both have a certain amount of upside that should make them attractive to other teams.

        1. Jonah

          I agree with you that Agone needs to go on the DL, and try to get better, especially since Bellinger is up here, and has gained some experience.

          Roberts can’t bat Grandal fourth, he is a different hitter, when runners, are on base.

          But Agone has to go out because that is best for the team right now, so he can get better.

      2. Utley is a left handed infield platoon piece. Roberts just said “He’s a grinder. He’s going to figure it out.” I wonder if he might have meant Utley will figure out he can’t hit anymore. But, he wasn’t the only one who couldn’t hit Cueto. 5 Ofers and AGon’s only hit shouldn’t have been ruled a hit. We got beat by superior pitching. It’s going to happen.

        Are we a .500 club? Nah. We can win 82, right? We’re on pace for 84. We’re 1/6 through the season already. Time flies.

  2. As good as Kershaw is, he can’t carry this inoffensive club on his shoulders year after year and one day he will figure that out. He is a cinch to opt out if FAZmonkey doesn’t get some real pitchers and hitters to help him. Ownership better wake up!

    1. Jonah

      Kershaw has already given up six HRs this year.

      And he only gave up eight HRs, all last year.

      The problem is that he is to much around the plate, because he doesn’t want to walk anyone.

      And he tends to almost always throw a fastball, if he is down on the count.

      And that is probably because he doesn’t want to walk a hitter too.

      Kershaw needs to throw his other pitches, when he is down on the count.

      Cueto will throw his other pitches when he is down on the count, and most good pitchers, do that.

      Think about what Kershaw tends to do in the post season, when a team starts hitting him.

      He tends to throw fastball after fastball, and he gets hit.

      Badger is right, we did get beat from a pretty good pitcher.

      I think the key in that game, came in the first inning.

      We had Toles and Bellinger on base with no outs, and Toles only scored, because Morse didn’t make the front end of the double play cleanly.

      We can’t expect Turner to get a hit every time, or Corey.

      Like I already said, Grandal can’t hit fourth, and Agone is compromised, he needs to go out and try to get well, because that is best for the team.

      1. Pence hit his homer on a curveball that stayed up in the zone, Posey hit his on a fastball up in the zone. Over the course of 162 games your ace is going to have a bad game or two. Kershaw’s slider was not working at all last night and he could not hit the corners. The guy is a 10 year vet. Hard to believe. You can bet he is beating himself up over this. The offense was once again offensive. They had Cueto right where they wanted him and let him off the hook twice. This teams RISP is a huge reason why they are 14-13. Granny ground out should never be hitting 4th. He lulled Roberts into a false sense of security by getting 3 hits in Sunday’s game. Bellinger is showing he is a very smart baseball player. As much as I am surprised by his maturity, he knows when to take advantage of the opposition. That bunt he laid down was a thing of beauty. He took advantage of the other team and got on base. As impressive as his 2 HR’s are, his 2 bunt singles in 1 week are pretty amazing too. If Toles could learn to bunt he would hit .350. With his speed he could have 20 more hits a year.. Speaking of speed, the Dodgers show a definite lack of same. It is sad to watch a good player coming to the end, and Chase Utley and Gonzo both look like the tank is getting very low. The .250 average for Gonzo is not as alarming as the total loss of power. He has hit maybe 3 balls all year to the wall. Utley made solid contact for about 3 days and now looks like he has forgotten how to protect the plate when he has 2 strikes on him. You protect to give yourself another chance. I have seen him take maybe 5 balls that were definitely strikes without lifting the bat off his shoulder. If Gonzo’s elbow is limiting his swing, he needs to go on the disabled list asap.

  3. Bellinger is adjusting. I think AGone will go on the DL soon. I think Utley will come around and post a great September. He’s taking AJ’s place.

    I sure hope Gutierrez bring something. We need more bats. Grandal and Puig not hitting yet. Yes the weather will heat up but are we going to count on both Arizona and Colorado melting down? They’ve got youngerish pitching staves that seem to have some young innings eaters. Those overrated innings eaters that don’t put up ridiculously high WARs but gives your team a chance to win series with some consistency.

    1. YF

      Grandal is not the same hitter when people are on base.

      He shouldn’t hit fourth, because he strikes out to much.

      And although at times Puig has been better when people are on base this year, he is a different hitter, when people are on base too.

      1. Yes and yes. They cannot adjust their swings. With 2 strikes and men on, it’s like a 50% probability to strike out on any type of pitch. Extremely frustrating to spectate.

        1. YF

          When Puig doesn’t get a hit for a while, he panicks, and pulls almost everything.

          And when people are on base, he will over swing, at times.

          1. There was no look of panic on him last night, and both balls he pulled were scorched. It is not like he is just turning over on the pitch. He has hit some balls in the last 2 weeks that were hit very hard, unfortunately they were right at someone. I am not worried about Yasiel, the hits will come. Will he hit .300, probably not, but with his defense I would take .275 and 20 dingers. What he does get is frustrated. A lot different than panic.

  4. And here’s a quote from Kershaw that would bring some nods from many on this board (I think he’s speaking to you MJ):

    “[The Giants] seem like one of the few teams these days that take pride in not striking out.”

    I don’t think we are one of those few teams. Not until we get Verdugo and Calhoun up (in 2018 and/or beyond?).

    1. YF

      He said what we have been talking about, for a while here.

      And that is the type of team that excells in the post season, because they can wear a pitcher, out.

      Think about Matt Carpenter, hitting against Kershaw, in the post season.

      That is why I am so high on Calhoun, he is not just a power hitter, he makes good contact too.

      And that is the sign of a very good hitter.

      And if Schwarber can find a place on the field with the Cubs, we can find Calhoun a place too.

      Because that is a hitter that has power, and hits for a good average too.

      I have heard a lot of good things, about Verdugo too, but I have heard he has an attitude problem also, but he is still young.

      Badger that should make you feel better.

      You have been pointing to 2018 for quite a while.

      I personally think that is when we will win it all, because all of the new players, as well as that, is the thirty year anniversary.

      I think some of the saber metric measurements make some hitters look much better then they are.

      1. After ’18 there are some younger free agents on whom I hope we will be bidding. By ’19 I think Turner may go back to a busy infield utility guy, Forsythe is traded and Manny Machado is our new third baseman. Or wait til ’20 and sign Newport Beach product Nolan Arenado. Either one is fine with me, though Arenado is two years older. I think Bryce Harper is already measured for pinstripes.

        1. Badger

          I don’t see Turner not being our third basemen that soon, that is only two years, away, unless that makes the team better.

          But he will be a full time player, at another position, if that is needed, not a utility player.

          I don’t want Harper on our team, he isn’t consistent, and he tends to get hurt a lot, and it seems like his team mates, don’t think he is a team player.

          And he is expecting way to much money.

          I guess the Yankees will have to change there facial hair rule, for Harper.

      2. Kris Bryant struck out 154 times last year.
        Addison Russel 135.
        Dexter Fowler 124.
        Rizzo at 108.

        Seager led the Dodgers at 133.
        Pederson at 130.
        Gonzo 117.
        Grandal 116.

        For the Indians:
        Napoli 194!
        ONE NINETY FOUR.
        Kipnis 146
        Naquin 112 (in 116 games!)
        Davis 107.
        Yan Gomes struck out 69 times in 74 games.

        For the great BoSox:
        Jackie Bradley struck out 143 times
        Shaw 133.
        Bogarts 123.
        Hanley 120 times.

        Strike outs are deflating and frustrating. They suck. They are also part of the game. I’m not sure the Dodgers do it any more than other “elite” teams.

        1. Bluto

          The fact that saber metrics count a strike out as just another out, and equate a walk as a hit, is one of there biggest problems.

          Because hitter’s like Grandal and Joc, can’t strike out at to much, and don’t get penalized for doing that, if they can pick up enough walks.

          Both those two players, have higher OPS’sthen they should, then they should.

          Because it makes it look like they are contributing to the offense, much more, then they really are.

  5. My response to someone commenting about talking more about the minor leagues like another site……..

    Talk about the minor leagues. Let me guess you want to talk about those ‘aces’ the organization is stock piling down in A ball. If I start talking about players playing class A baseball, shoot me. That is the most ludicrous thing I know. Here’s some talk about minor leagues. The majority, like 70% of ALL minor leaguers never make it to the show and if they do, most of the time it is with a different organization. Of the 30% that do make it to the show, 10% of them actually contribute and become starters. Everyone is wasting their breath talking about minor league baseball, ESPECIALLY when you are talking about guys in ‘A’ ball.

    1. For the most part yeah.

      Can we really shoot Chili if this happens? Who would pull the trigger?

      There are sites that specialize in tracking and discussing minor league prospects, plenty of discussion going on there. If you want to talk about low and high A pitchers, it’s easy to do there. Trust me. I do.

    2. I’ll talk about our A ball pitching:

      Trade them all to Baltimore for Machado. Then extend him for 8 years and a quarter billion. Like I just mentioned, he’s a free agent in’19.

      No?

      Then trade them all plus Joc Pederson for Arenado.

      No?

      Then you tell me for whom you trade them all.

      You trust yourself bluto? Then I trust you too.

      1. Unfortunately, neither Baltimore or Colorado would take all of our class A ‘aces’ for either of their stars.

        Talking low minor league baseball is about equivalent to fantasizing about that beautiful single lady and thinking ‘only if’……….we/you can live in fantasyland or we can live in reality. The reality is that 90% of all minor leaguers do not have long careers in the Bigs with pitching being even less than that.

  6. Dodgers Digest has an article up about Kershaw’s slider issues (explains his home runs given up so far).

    Which leads me to one of my pet theories. Which is that maybe one of the problems with starting pitching league wide is that the pitchers are throwing too hard? I think Newtonian physics would dictate that the higher the velocity, the less movement, and the grip only helps so much once you get into the mid 90’s mph. On the other hand I think bat speed just keeps getting faster and faster over time as athletes improve. Then I would venture to hypothesize/guess that pitchers would be better off if they learned to throw with more movement and less velocity.

    We certainly see the inefficiency of pitchers like Baez and Hatcher. Am I being old school here or ahead of the curve (literally)?

    1. YF

      You are right on about that, and you are also ahead of the curve.

      That is how they found Dayton.

      He doesn’t have a high velocity fastball, but he has a lot of spin on his fastball, that makes his pitches, harder to hit.

      Command is the other factor, and that is Baez and Hatcher’s problem, most of the time.

      I don’t know why they are keeping Hatcher, he can’t handle pitching on a big market team, like the Dodgers, with the high expectations.

      They just need to let him go.

      He only had one good year, before he was traded here, and he only pitched well, for a couple of months, in his first year with the team.

      1. Yes, spin rate. The Dodgers (and Cubs, maybe Red Sox under Dave D, but that’s hard to discern) put a lot of emphasis on spin rate.

        It’s not Newtonian physics. It’s simply a matter of velocity, vectors and fixed distance. The more velocity a ball has, the less time it has to shift planes. That said, with a release point it can obviously “move” horizontally or vertically.

        There’s another aspect of analytic pitching evaluation about tunnelling that is equally interesting. The basic tenet there is that the later a pitch begins to differentiate (a curve from a change, etc.) the more difficult it is to hit.

        1. Probably true, at least in theory. What I have trouble accepting, with my pedestrian mental and physical abilities, is how much bearing that all has, considering that the batter has something like one-half second to figure all that out, make his adjustment, and swing. I know they can do it to some degree but even the best of them is successful only a small percentage of the time. And I wonder if the use of steroids enhanced their mental and physical abilities to do so. But don’t get me started on steroids…

          1. Jonah

            Ultimately I think steroids give a player, more endurance, then anything, to make it easier, to make it through the long season.

            That is why a player like Dee Gordon, took steroids.

          2. Jonah

            But you are right, some hitters, just see the ball, and hit the ball.

            And if they try to do different then that, they don’t usually do well.

            That may be the type of hitter, that Puig was, when he first came up.

        2. Well, to pick a nit here, it is Newtonian physics in that Newton’s laws describe the relationship between a body and the forces acting upon it, and its motion in response to those forces. A ball spinning while moving has more pressure on top, pushing it down. You also have gravity working on it. A spinning baseball will always move the direction it is spinning. In some cases even ML hitters are blown away by sheer speed, but the smart pitchers, and advanced pitching coaches, will tell you it’s much more about spin rate, changing speeds and …… LOCATION. I mentioned some of this yesterday when talking about pitchers attempting to punch a hole in forever through the catches mitt. The pitcher we have that has impressed me the most is Ryu. He’s getting it done with guile. Pitch to contact by spinning the ball away from the center of the strike zone.

          1. Badger

            The more that I think about what you said, I too, believe Ryu has been done really well this year.

            And I think he will eventually out pitch, McCarthy.

          2. Yes, Badger if you want to make the case that Newtonian physics is important in how spin rate and aerodynamics play a part in a pitch’s flight that would be irrefutable.

            But that’s not YF’s original case:
            I think Newtonian physics would dictate that the higher the velocity, the less movement, and the grip only helps so much once you get into the mid 90’s mph

        3. Why ‘Bluto’? From your manner of speaking (writing) and your seeming intellectual capability, you seem like the button-down collar establishment kind of guy, just the opposite of ‘Bluto’. The name doesn’t fit the persona.

  7. No easy fixes anytime soon. They will continue in the FAZ tradition of tweak, re-tweak, and tweak some more. Gutierrez will be activated today. Who goes down? I think they would like to keep Bellinger around until Joc gets back at least, but I think he will be the one who climbs on the OKC-LA shuttle. Wood today. Lets hope we see the kind of start he had last time out. I hate losing, I hate losing to the Giants even more.

  8. There was some mention of Kershaw over relying on his hard stuff earlier today. I won’t attempt to find one of those threads, I’ll start a new one….
    For a lot of years Kershaw was just as happy as a pig in a mudhole to have AJ as his catcher. Sometimes those best friends, feel good buddies are not the best choice for working with. We don’t always recognize it or like it but sometimes an in your face pusher type can bring out the best in us. A stronger willed, less good buddy type catcher might well have gotten more out of Clayton.

        1. Koufax was Ryu’s cunning with Kershaw’s arm. I don’t think Bluto probably ever saw Koufax pitch, I think he’s a young squirt. But knowledgeable… On names, I know what you mean, mine has no meaning or overtones either.

    1. Jonah

      I don’t think Bellinger is going down.

      I think Roberts was just saying the spiel, he had to.

      I have to go out and do my big shopping today.

      I am going to Target, Petsmart, and to Ralph’s, do you need anything?

      1. Yeah, all their money… Never liked Target, like Kmart better but now WalMart blows them all away… Didn’t have much use for Ralph’s and none at all for Petsmart. Did most of my food shopping at Staters in California.

        1. Jonah

          I buy some of my groceries at Target.

          I get that lactose free milk, for a really good price, there.

          Walmart is not as close, and I think Targets, carries better stuff.

          I am only going to Ralph’s because it is close, and on my way home.

          I do shop at Staters too, because it is close, but not as close, as Ralphs is.

          But I liked Luckys, and Gemco, much better.

          I mentioned Petsmart, because I thought you might want me to bring a therapy pet home, for someone, we know.

      2. Bellinger will be gone when Joc is activated and that is more because of roster restrictions and the fact they do not want the kid sitting in MLB when he could be playing everyday at AAA. To think he is staying here is not understanding FAZ’s plan or thinking. The ONLY way he stays is if they DL Gonzo. You have 2 outfielders and a 2nd baseman coming off the DL by the end of the week. No room for the kid.

  9. Downloaded about 25 potential ringtones for my new phone. Just fooling around. Right now I’m using a wolf howl. Might go back to reville like I was using on my old one. Did you see the movie “Full Metal Jacket”? Remember the diatribe R Lee Ermey gave Private Cowboy very early in the picture? I also have a ringtone of that.

    1. My ringtone is Waylon Jennings Ramblin Man, and message tone is Bill Engvals telling me my pocket is ringing. I have some others stored including some bagpipes playing Blue Bonnet.

    2. Jonah

      Did you find Revolution by the Beatles ring tone, I have been wanting that, for my ring tone, but I can’t find it?

      I also like Reasons, from Earth Wind, and Fire.

      I am using a dog’s bark, for my ring tone.

      I never was able to watch Koufax either, because I was to young, but I always hear about how dominate, he was.

      1. Sandy was the bees knees, fun to watch and overpowering. I did see him really take his lumps at the coliseum once. Braves tagged him for 8 runs and 3 homers, Aaron, Mathews and Adcock. And none were cheapies over the wall…

      2. MJ, I went on yahoo and did a search for Beatles ring tones just now, depends on which kind of phone you have, but I found Revolution for Android and I-Phone…might have it for others I do not know.

  10. MJ, did I ever tell you about the first mobile home I owned? Looked at it on the sales lot, it was a model, asked them how much with furniture as is, moved and set up. I think it was about $12000 to $13000. Decided to sell about 3 years later. I listed it for $18000, a fair price I thought. For 6 months people looked at it and found reasons not to buy; drapes are wrong color, cabinets are too dark, you know, silly reasons like that that apparently make sense to a woman but leave a man scratching his head and wondering… Prices continued to go up and I kept raising my price every few months. Finally sold it about a year later for $22,500. I don’t mind at all being different from other people.

  11. SVS optioned to OKC, Gutierrez activated and Gurnick reports that Bellinger is taking balls at 1st base…

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