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Clayton Kershaw Makes Shohei Ohtani look Foolish in 4-2 Win Over Halos

Clayton Kershaw World Series

With the free agency freeze that dragged on into spring training, the Dodgers got a look at the top imported free agent that chose to sign with the other southern California baseball club. The Dodgers defeated the Angels 4-2 on Wednesday afternoon in Tempe Arizona, and fans were treated with a delightful match-up; Clayton Kershaw vs. two-way star Shohei Ohtani. Kershaw won the battle by whiffing Ohtani on a 2-2 curveball in the first inning to highlight his three scoreless frames on the day.

Before Ohtani signed with the Angels, the Dodgers were a finalist for his services. Unfortunately Ohtani decided not to sign with the Dodgers, instead inking a deal that will see him earn the MLB minimum salary over the next three seasons. Ohtani was 0 for 2, grounding into a double play in the fourth inning. He’s collected just one hit this spring and seems to be slowly adjusting to major league pitching. Ohtani did not pitch in the game, playing as the DH against the Dodgers on Wednesday.

Kershaw vs. Ohtani
Clayton Kershaw vs. Shohei Ohtani

Kershaw sure gave him something to adjust to, which Ohtani failed to do so. Kershaw’s trademarked uncle Charlie made Ohtani freeze like a snowman. Kershaw stated that he could care less about Ohtani’s decision to sign with the Angeles and not the Dodgers. He also wished him luck. Ouch. This could turn into a marquee match-up in the near future.

The game saw the Dodgers score three of their four runs on home runs from Andrew Toles in the sixth inning and a two-run shot from Logan Forsythe in the seventh inning. Forsythe is quietly having a superb spring, batting .500. He was 2 for 3 on Wednesday with three runs batted in. Forsythe’s RBI double in the second put the Dodgers up 1-0.The Angels added runs in the fifth and the eighth inning, including a solo home run from Colin Walsh.

The Dodgers are also expecting Corey Seager to take the field next Monday. Apparently the 2016 rookie of the year was scheduled to play a minor league game, but the Dodgers are going to be treating him with kid gloves. It’s best for the Dodgers to be cautious here. This is Corey Seager here, and the Dodgers don’t want to lose him for any extended amount of time. Austin Barnes is returning to the field as well. He played on Tuesday and is expected to play on Thursday too. The Dodgers will travel to Goodyear to take on the Cleveland Indians on Thursday evening. Alex Wood will counter Josh Tomlin at 5:05 PM.

Scott Andes

Scott Andes: Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic

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Scott Andes
Scott Andes: Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic

40 thoughts on “Clayton Kershaw Makes Shohei Ohtani look Foolish in 4-2 Win Over Halos

  1. Missed Toles homer, but saw Forsythe’s. Nice pitching by Broussard in the 9th. Kershaw was a little shaky in the 3rd,, but a pop up got him out of trouble. I will say one thing for both Ruiz and Ramos, those guys can hit, too bad the rosters are stuck at 25. I think it is way past time for them to go to the 28 man roster where you can like basket ball have players on the inactive list. Would be great for guys who need a blow during the season. I know that they have discussed it a few times. The 26 man roster may be with us soon. The union would love it and I also think that it is time for the NL to adopt the DH. Both leagues should have the same rules. Would save us the pain of having to watch Rich Hill hit.

  2. I’m with you Michael on both the 26-28 man roster and also Ruiz. This kid is amazing. I haven’t been this impressed since Corey Seager (and before Seager, Kershaw …. I’m am not sold on Urias or Buehler and Bellinger was a surprise to me as I thought he was just another Joc, but happy to be wrong on Bellinger and still hopeful Urias and Buehler surprise me).

    1. I can understand more the buzz created by Ruiz. He has some serious bat skills and did not look bad behind the dish either. The first pitcher he caught, Moran was pretty will there even though he gave up just the homer and Ruiz looked very fluid back there. I never thought Bellinger was another Joc, but he showed some serious holes in his swing in the World Series. Most disturbing part of that was that he never adjusted to what the Astro pitchers were doing. But he looks pretty solid so far this spring. The added muscle seems to have helped him some. I do not see Urias coming back before August, and even at that I am not sure he is a better option than what they have. I also see Buehler getting most of the 140 innings they want out of him at AAA. Unless there is an injury to a starter, I see no room on this team for him and I think using him out of the pen is dumb. He needs to start every 5th day if that is his long term job, and he is not breaking into this rotation this year.

      1. I see room for every starting pitcher, 1 through 9, with additional room for 10-13 in late summer.

        Great pitch by Kershaw to a young rookie in Spring Training. Was it “just a bit outside”? On a veteran, yeah maybe. On a rookie? Take a seat meat.

        Is Ruiz a left handed hitter? Yes? OPS’d .926 vs RH pitching last year? Adios Yasmani. Here’s a bus ticket Farmer. Oh wait, Ruiz is 19? Those numbers were at Rancho? Hmm. Maybe Yasmani stays another year. Or two. Rats.

        1. Badger

          I am sure you forgot that this is Grandal’s free agent year, but Ruiz is suppose to be the real thing, as young as he is.

          We have a lot of good catchers, it would be good if Farmer could play well on defense at third, because he would give us another back up for Turner, because we know Farmer can hit.

          We have exactly the same starters this year, except for the short time McCarthy pitched at the beginning of the season.

          And Morrow wasn’t even in the picture, until just before the Allstar break.

          Maybe Chargois could be are set up guy.

          I know he had injuries, but a White Sox fan said, that Chargois was misdiagnosed by their trainers or medical people, and they didn’t handle him correctly, so maybe we can keep him healthy.

          Because the same fan said he mostly did a good job, as their set up guy.

          He doesn’t throw as hard as Morrow, but he does throw hard and I believe he throws a slider that is harder, then most pitchers.

          And he is still young at 25.

          1. Grandal free agent 2019.

            Good point.

            Deadline trade piece?

            I don’t know Chargois from chamois. Hope he’s healthy all year. And oh yeah, hope he’s good.

    1. Have I seen him? Yeah, on video. He pitched in Minnesota. Unless you live in Minnesota you don’t get to see him pitch. In the video he looked good. Great sinker. But we must ask the same question we ask of every pitcher FAZ signs – is he healthy enough to pitch an entire season?

  3. I have seen him pitch twice. He has some nasty stuff. Did not realize Peters is 6’6″. Wood is 2-0 with a plus 10 ERA, go figure. Buehler will not be on the roster when they break camp, but at AAA. My first prediction…..

    1. Not exactly going out on a limb there Bear as Buehler is listed 8th on the depth chart. It’s pretty much accepted that, baring injury, the rotation is Kershaw, Hill, Maeda, Wood and Ryu. The first several innings of Buehler’s scheduled 140-150 will be in Oklahoma.

      Peters looks like a beast. He can run a bit too as he hits triples and steals an occasional base. I can see him at a corner outfield position by ‘20. He needs to cut down on Ks. 189 in A ball. Yoiks. He’s 22, so time to start kicking the door down kid.

      1. No I am not. But all over Dodger land you see guys posting stuff that say Buehler will be on the team, fans mostly, not informed baseball people. If Peters hits .275 in the majors, he will be a 30 homer a year guy. But he needs to make contact.

    2. Thanks you guys!

      A friend of mine is concerned with Wood going away from his delivery, and I think he has made some valid points.

      He said that Wood’s delivery is more deceptive for hitters, and he also made a point about Wood losing some velocity, without a delivery.

      After all, that is one of the biggest reasons pitchers have a delivery.

      1. He looks good so far. Velocity is not as important as location. That’s why Kershaw is so good. Koufax’s fastball was close to 100 most of the time, but with his Uncle Charlie as good as it was and his control, he did amazing things. Kersh’s fastball tops out at about 95 but is around 93 most of the time. Wood’s control has looked pretty good. Koufax actually got better when Norm Sherry suggested in a spring game that instead of trying to throw so hard all the time, he should just more or less play catch with the catcher. The rest is history.

        1. Michael

          From what I have heard, Koufax was one of the only pitchers a batter could know what pitch was coming, and the batter still couldn’t hit Koufax.

          1. A little history here MJ. When Koufax threw his perfect game against the Cubs, a 1-0 gem, the Dodgers got one hit off the Cubs pitcher Bob Henley. Koufax struck out the last 6 hitters he faced. He also at the time was reported to be suffering from a sore arm. We all know now that it was the arthritis that would eventually end his career. After facing Koufax and striking out, Harvey Kuenn, who was ending his career with the Cubs and would later manage the Brewers nicknamed Harvey’s Wallbangers, was quoted as saying, ” sore arm my ass” That game still holds the record for the least hits by both teams. 1.

  4. Wood is apparently tough to predict. Projections have him from 23-27 starts, 123-144 innings. Composite is 134 innings of 3.63 ERA.

    “The Quick Opinion: Wood had a very strong season in 2017, though questions about his health and durability remain. His deceptively low 2.72 ERA means he’ll likely go for more than he’s worth on draft day.”

    If he can throw 144 innings I’d be pleasantly surprised.

    1. I hate projections. I really do. Trying to predict what any player will do over the course of a season in the age of sabermetrics is futile. Now, when Mays was in his prime, 30 plus and 100 ribbies were pretty much a lock.

  5. Just running some numbers this morning based on projections by Fangraphs.

    Our 5 starters, best case projections, will start about 130 games and average less than 6 per start. So, we already know the bullpen will carry a heavy load over 162 games. We are predicted to win the West by 12 games so if that holds up we should be plenty rested by October.

    My question is this – who is going to start the other 32 games? Stripling, Stewart, Buehler and Urias divide them up? Frankly I would choose Buehler to start half of them, but I doubt that happens. Hopefully Urias will get in at least 6 starting in August, but no guarantees he will start any. Font might get a couple, an unknown (deadline deal involving Grandal) might get 6-8, Stripling/Stewart the same, and Buehler. Should be interesting to see how this staff holds up. Different game than yesteryear isn’t it. Very few thoroughbreds, quite a few quarter horses.

    1. Badger

      There was a quote by Wood, and he said he rather pitch an elite 150 innings, then a so, so 200 innings.

    2. Badger

      Grandal isn’t easy to move right now, with the way the market has been.

      I think Lucroy is still waiting to sign with a team, and he is a pretty good catcher, and a pretty good hitter.

        1. One thing that is good about Wood eliminating his delivery, maybe that will make him stay more healthy, in the season.

          Because as you know, he had such an awkward delivery, and that probably put more pressure on his body.

          And he had that inflammation in his rib area, last year.

          They didn’t have the velocity on TV last night, to see how hard Wood was throwing.

          And I agree with Michael that location means more then velocity in most cases, but when Wood’s velocity was down a little last year, it did seem to effect his effectiveness more, against hitters, last year.

          Buehler is going to pitch on Saturday, but he will be coming out, of the bullpen.

          I don’t understand why they have these pitchers like Buehler, report to spring training, at the beginning of spring training, if they want to keep their innings down.

          I would have them report later in Spring training, so they are not just there, trying not to do to much.

          That takes a pitcher out of their usual routine, because pitchers like to build off their starts, or innings.

    3. Font will be gone at the end of spring training. Reason…..he is not making the 25 man roster and he is out of options. Dude is toast……2nd prediction.

  6. Package

    Nomar, Ned, and that announcer, said that Kemp would be in left, on opening day, and he would be the primary leftfielder.

    1. That announcer? I had no clue who he was either, but Jerry Hairston Jr was on the broadcast yesterday, not Nomar unless you are talking about the post game stuff which I do not get.

        1. Got it. Joc has options left. Toles is hitting close to .400, Joc around .180, Kemp well over .300 and looking good in the OF. Prediction #3…Joc starts the season at OKC. Farmer is outplaying both Grandal and Barnes. Trade Grandal for a bag of balls and some new bats because that is about what that bum is worth.

    2. MJ
      For me that is great news!! He went 1-2 today and is hitting a smooth .348 with 6RBIs and 3HRs.. I would like to keep Toles also but don’t know if there will be room with Puig , Taylor, Pederson, ect. ect.

      1. Package, Eric Stephens is saying Toles and Kemp are the front runners for LF. Joc is behind.

        Eric Stephens has a better line into the Dodgers club as a whole a he rarely says anything this definite about position battles. I think Joc is going to be the AAA injury insurance this year. (I almost said auto insurance.)

      2. Package, the Dodgers will carry 4 outfielders…..Toles, Kemp, Taylor and Puig. Kike will be the backup. Infielders will be, if Seager is healthy, Bellinger, Forsythe, Seager, Turner, Utley. That’s 10 position players. 2 catchers makes 12……the other 13 will be pitchers.

      3. Package

        I thought Joc would have to have a really good spring training, to even get another chance.

        He still hasn’t hit consistently after three years, and he has had over a thousand at bats, at the major league level.

        And he had a terrible season last year, and when he was sent down to AAA last year, he didn’t redeem himself like Puig did, the year before.

        He barely hit over 200 in AAA.

        He is un dependable, and I don’t want the front office to have to trade for another outfielder, because Joc has stopped hitting, again.

        I don’t think he automatically has a spot, on this team.

        If he isn’t sent down, it will be more because of the two million dollars, he is making.

        If Toles is not going to play full time, I rather he went down to AAA , and play everyday, then sit on the bench.

        And it looks like Kemp is going to be the primary leftfielder, so let Joc sit on the bench.

        And if one of our outfielders gets hurt, Toles should be the first guy called up.

        And he will be better prepared playing everyday in AAA, then sitting on the bench in the majors.

  7. Heyman reports the White Sox have no interest whatsoever in Kemp, and the writer is not sure where else he fits.

    Ergo, Heyman is the 2nd reporter after Pedro to speculate Kemp could stay with the team.

  8. I like Toles a lot, but I think Kemp’s bat, will make the most profound difference in the line up, so I am ok with Toles going down.

    And if Forsythe struggles against righties again, maybe Toles can come up like Taylor did last year, and play center, and Taylor could play second.

    A lot of people are blaming Forsythe’s bad numbers against righties, because he got hurt early in the season, and missed a lot of time, and because of that, he never really got back on track.

    But the thing is, Forsythe had no problem hitting lefties, in fact, he had pretty good numbers, against lefties last year.

    Wouldn’t you think if it was the time off, he would have trouble hitting both righties and lefties, especially since he saw a lot more righty pitchers, then lefties.

  9. I just read that Roberts is sending Matt Kemp, and ten rookies to the rodeo to night.

    And Kemp and Turner picked out, and paid for the cowboy outfits, the rookies would wear to the rodeo, tonight.

    It looks like Kemp is part of this team, since Roberts included him, in this tonight.

    1. YF

      Those teams would have been much better, if Mattingly was not the manager!

      Remember those good teams, never would come behind and win games, after the seventh inning.

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