After Zack Greinke proved to be a terrible pitcher due to his scoreless innings streak coming to an end, Clayton Kershaw entered today’s start with a 29-inning streak of his own and all he did was shut down the Angels to secure a 3-1 win for the Dodgers. The journey to this point, however, wasn’t a smooth one, as Kershaw was scratched twice from scheduled starts to give his ailing hip a few more days rest.
That rest seems to have paid off, as Kershaw dealt eight more scoreless frames to run his streak to 37 straight. Kershaw allowed just two hits and a walk over 114 pitches, surprisingly striking out just seven batters and relying on weak contact more than swings and misses today.
Then again, this did happen:
Andrew Heaney, acquired from the Marlins in the three-team trade with the Dodgers, showed why he was the best prospect involved in that deal and arguably the best player, shutting down the Dodgers offense for five innings. In the sixth, however, he ran into trouble after back-to-back singles by Howie Kendrick and Adrian Gonzalez put runners at the corners. Then Scott Van Slyke drilled a ball that looked sure to be gone but ended up at the warning track for a sacrifice fly and a 1-0 lead. That and pitch count was enough to knock Heaney out of the game, and the Dodgers added insurance runs when Yasmani Grandal hit his 15th homer of the year, a two-run shot.
Kenley Jansen, who has apparently been battling a virus, entered in the ninth and proceeded to allow a ground-ball single and a walk to start the frame. A strikeout then made Mike Trout the tying run at the plate, making basically everybody poop their pants, but he thankfully went down on strikes. Next up wasn’t any easier though, with Albert Pujols hitting a fly ball single to drive in a run. Thankfully though, Erick Aybar popped out to second on the first pitch, securing a Dodgers win.
Jansen struggled a bit in July (6.00 ERA in nine innings), for sure, and August isn’t off to the best start now, but it’s hard to get overly concerned about two weakly hit singles.
In any case: