Clayton Kershaw, Justin Turner’s Aggressive Baserunning Help Dodgers Beat Giants
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Well-placed balls and a limp suggested Clayton Kershaw was in store for an early evening, but in the end he turned in seven innings in the Los Angeles Dodgers’ 2-1 victory over the San Francisco Giants. The win snapped the Dodgers’ six-game losing streak at AT&T Park.

Justin Turner singled with two outs in the first, extending his hitting streak to 11 games, which tied a career-best. It was otherwise a quiet inning for the Dodgers. Conversely, Kershaw endured an odd opening frame.

Christian Arroyo singled with one out, collecting the first hit of his career. But Arroyo was then erased on a force out. Kershaw appeared to pickoff Eduardo Nuñez to get out of the inning on just nine pitches, but the Giants successfully challenged the out call at second base.

Buster Posey walked, though both runners were stranded when Brandon Crawford lined out to Cody Bellinger in left field. The inning did come at somewhat of a cost — 12 additional pitches for Kershaw — after the poor tag attempt.

He offset that by throwing just six pitches in a 1-2-3 second inning. There was some concern in the third when Kershaw grounded out and began to limp down the line. He was checked on upon returning to the dugout and remained in the game.

Making his first start this season, Ty Blach led off the bottom of the third with a double. It was his third hit in five career at-bats against Kershaw.

Chris Taylor misplayed a slow chopper, which resulted in an infield single for Hunter Pence. Kershaw struck out Arroyo and Nuñez, but a Buster Posey groundball to shortstop snuck by a diving Corey Seager for an RBI single.

The Dodgers struck quickly in the fourth, with Seager working a leadoff walk, and Turner and Puig following with base hits. Adrian Gonzalez grounded into a force out, but Turner scored the go-ahead run on a Brandon Crawford throw to home plate that was late.

Gonzalez led off the seventh with a double to right-center field, which was followed by a Yasmani Grandal walk. Both runners advanced on a George Kontos wild pitch, which took the bat out of Bellinger’s hands as he was intentionally walked to load the bases.

That’s how they remained, however, with Kershaw flying-out and pinch-hitter Andrew Toles striking out on a pitch in the zone. After allowing a one-out single to Joe Panik in the bottom of the fourth, Kershaw retired 10 in a row, including five by strikeout.

Pinch-hitter Gorkys Hernandez snapped the streak with a two-out single in the bottom of the seventh. Kershaw ended the inning one batter later, aided by Turner making a sliding stop and throw on a grounder hit to his left.

The book on Kershaw closed after 90 pitches across seven innings of one-run baseball, with one walk and seven strikeouts. It was the third time in four starts this season Kershaw completed at least seven innings.

The Dodgers put a pair of baserunners on in the eighth, only to fail to capitalized. They’d stranded seven runners to that point but still led, 2-1. Pedro Baez retired the first two batters faced in the bottom of the eighth, then gave way to Kenley Jansen.

Posey and Crawford greeted the Dodgers’ closer with back-to-back singles to put runners on the corners. Crawford appeared to suffer a groin injury on his hit. Brandon Belt pinch-hit and worked a full count but struck out to end the inning. Jansen returned to the mound in the ninth and completed his third consecutive four-out save.

Bellinger finished 1-for-3 with an intentional walk and legging out an infield single with one out in the ninth in his MLB debut.