Clayton Kershaw Looks To Pitch The Dodgers Into First Place in Series Finale

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Sometimes life gets in the way of Baseball, and last night that happened to me. I had a prior engagement, and was unable to watch the Dodger’s 9-1 win over the Cardinals on Saturday night at Dodger Stadium. I haven’t missed a game in a long time, but hey even I can’t watch every single game. Sometimes life happens.

Dodgers Lineup vs. St. Louis

Gordon 2B

Puig RF

Gonzalez 1B

Kemp LF

Ethier CF

Uribe 3B

Ellis C

Rojas SS

Kershaw P

Shelby Miller-7-6 vs. Clayton Kershaw-8-2

Injuries continue to ravage the Dodgers though. During their six run explosion in yesterday’s second inning, the Dodgers lost their entire left side of the infield again. Justin Turner strained his left hamstring after hitting an RBI double. According to reports, he’s headed to the disabled list, and Carlos Triunfel appears headed back to Los Angeles. Since it’s to replace an injured player, he doesn’t have to wait the standard ten days.Then Hanley Ramirez had to leave the game after walking and scoring a run in that same inning. Not because of the shoulder, but this time it was a calf injury. I have no clue. Then even third base coach Lorenzo Bundy pulled something while waiving everyone in. He received treatment, and stayed in the game.

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Seriously, stop it with the injuries Dodgers. Despite this, the Dodgers are in perhaps their best position all season long. Zack Greinke whiffed ten across seven strong frames, to pick up his NL leading tenth win of the season Saturday, which put the Dodgers to within one game of the slumping Giants for first place. Can you believe it? The Dodgers were 9.5 games back just a few weeks ago, and now they can acquire a share of first place today with a win and another Giant’s loss. Remember the loss of Angel Pagan has sent the Giant’s into a tail spin that is sending them right into the toilet bowl. Hopefully somebody will be there to flush.

The Dodgers will try not to strain all the hamstrings in this afternoon’s fourth game of the series. The Dodgers will go for a series win as Shelby Miller will duel Clayton Kershaw in the series finale.

It was uncertain whether Miller would pitch at all today because he was hurt too, but he’s going to make the start. Miller is 7-6 this year with a 3.76 ERA. He’s struggled with his control, walking 46 in 93 innings. Miller had made two starts against the Dodgers and is 1-0 with a 4.26 ERA. That one win came at Dodger Stadium for the 6’3 right hander.

The Dodgers are batting .278 (5 for 18) against Miller with one home run. Adrian Gonzlez has hit the only home run.

PAABH2B3BHRRBIBBSOBAOBPSLG
Adrian Gonzalez442001300.500.5001.250
A.J. Ellis320000001.000.333.000
Andre Ethier331000000.333.333.333
Dee Gordon220000000.000.000.000
Dan Haren220000002.000.000.000
Clayton Kershaw221000001.500.500.500
Juan Uribe220000001.000.000.000
Hanley Ramirez1110000001.0001.0001.000
Total19185001305.278.316.444

The Dodgers will counter with Clayton Kershaw. The lefty is coming off of eight more shutout frames in his win last week at Kansas City, just two starts removed from his masterful no-hitter. Kershaw is now 8-2 with a 2.24 ERA.  Kershaw has 94 whiffs and just 9 walks so far this year. That’s an incredible 11-1 strikeout to walk ratio. Kershaw has whiffed 11.7 per nine innings.

Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Kershaw hasn’t faced the cards since last year’s NLCS, but is 4-5 with a 3.75 ERA in 12 starts. The Cards have hit .280 (40 for 143) with two home runs against Kershaw. Yadier Molina is hitting .292 (8 for 27), and Allen Craig is hitting .294 ( 5 for 17) off of Kershaw. There are home runs from Craig and Holliday.

PAABH2B3BHRRBIBBSOBAOBPSLG
Matt Holliday48381010121010.263.417.368
Yadier Molina30278200234.296.367.370
Matt Carpenter18184110103.222.222.389
Allen Craig18175001500.294.278.471
Adam Wainwright1062100221.333.500.500
Jon Jay971100113.143.222.286
Peter Bourjos653000002.600.667.600
Daniel Descalso642000020.500.667.500
Matt Adams541100111.250.400.500
Jhonny Peralta550000002.000.000.000
Shane Robinson553000200.600.600.600
Tony Cruz331000100.333.333.333
Mark Ellis320000001.000.000.000
Shelby Miller220000001.000.000.000
Total16814340712171928.280.364.385

The Dodgers have the opportunity, a golden opportunity to move into first place. So will this be moving day for the Dodgers? It’s time for the Giant’s evil reign over first place to come to an end. Make it happen Dodgers.

Game time – 1:10 PM

Go Blue!

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