The Dodgers were starting this weekend series in dire need of a shot of confidence and a win – any kind of win.
Kershaw began the night as advertised, by sitting the first six Arizona batters he faced.
Yasiel Puig came up in the second inning with the Dodgers first shot at scoring. He stepped in against Greinke with men on second and third and one out. He walked to load the bases for Kershaw. The Dodgers scoring woes continued as Kershaw grounded into a double play, leaving the bases full, and the stadium deflated, as the home crowd feared the Dodgers’ scoring drought might continue at home.
Earlier Zack Greinke was quoted as saying he was looking forward to facing Kershaw. He said he wanted to see just how “nasty” Kershaw is. Greinke got his chance when he came up to hit in the third inning. Kershaw quickly struck him out (for his second K of the inning).
The Dodgers got on the board in their half of the third, when Adrian Gonzalez knocked in a run with a base hit.
The singles hit parade continued when Logan Forsythe brought a run home. Dodgers up 2-0.
The Dodgers got on the scoring train once again in the fourth with a pair of two out singles and a two RBI double in the left-field corner by Justin Turner.
At the end of four, it was Dodgers 4, Dbacks Zilch.
The boys small balled another run in the fifth, with Yasiel Puig picking up an RBI sac fly. Dodgers 5-0. Clayton Kershaw checked in at five Ks, 1 hit and just 60 pitches.
He then took over and mowed down the Diamondbacks like they were dry Arizona weeds. He was under 90 pitches at the end of eight, so the skipper let the ace take the ball for a complete game.
But before that happened, Andrew Toles belted an eight inning, line drive, home run to centerfield to put the Dodgers up 7-0.
Kershaw took the mound for the Dodgers’ first shot at a complete game with 87 pitches and only two hits under his belt. Unfortunately, he lost the shutout and his complete game on a single and a double. Kersh went out leading 7-1.
The Dbacks managed to tap into the Dodgers’ bullpen, and they got Pedro Baez, for his first outing this year. Baez walked Paul Goldschmidt and then put up the final two outs to win a much-needed, feel-good game for the Dodgers.
Kershaw (2-1) went 8 and 1/3 innings with 4 hits, 1 run, 1 walk, and 8 Ks. ERA 2.53
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Home run: Andrew Toles