Dodgers News: Clayton Kershaw Shoulders Blame In Loss To Marlins
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Dodgers lost another game this season in which they held a lead; a lead that came in the first inning, no less. However, instead of the blame falling on the Dodgers’ bullpen, Clayton Kershaw was the culprit on Tuesday night at Dodger Stadium.

Miami Marlins starter Tom Koehler issued a leadoff walk to Chase Utley in the bottom of the first, then walked Justin Turner with one out. Both runners advanced on a wild pitch, then took an extra base, with Utley scoring, as J.T. Realmuto’s throw to third base kicked away and rolled out of play.

Koehler threw a second wild pitch in the inning, spotting the Dodgers a 2-0 lead despite Los Angeles not managing to get a hit. Kershaw was dominant from there on out, striking out eight batters through five scoreless innings.

Marcell Ozuna was stranded at third base in the second inning after hitting a one-out triple, as Kershaw struck out Koehler and Dee Gordon. “Through the first five innings, you think he’s going to throw a shutout with the way he was commanding the baseball,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said after the loss. “He was in complete control, but it turned quickly.”

A one-out Miguel Rojas pinch-hit bloop double in the sixth led to a five-run inning for the Marlins. Dee Gordon reached on an infield single, and Martin Prado and Christian Yelich followed with a pair of RBI singles.

Giancarlo Stanton delivered the knockout punch, clubbing a fastball left out over the plate for a three-run home run to center field that gave the Marlins a 5-3 lead. The homer was Stanton’s third in as many games.

Running through the sequence of hits, Kershaw lamented missing his spots to multiple batters. “Prado, got in on him a little bit, but he got a hit. Yelich was a bad pitch, that’s my fault there, as well as Stanton,” he said. “It just kind of happened in a row, happened quick. I felt OK tonight, actually. A little better than my past few starts, but the results don’t reflect that.”

“Nothing really felt different,” Kershaw went on to say of the fateful sixth inning. “They got some hits, and I’ve got to do a better job of limiting the damage. I obviously missed my spot on Stanton and that’s what he does. He makes you pay for stuff like that. They had a couple of two-strike hits, too. Everything you’re not supposed to do, I did in that inning.”

Kiké Hernandez appeared in the on-deck circle to pinch-hit for Kershaw in the bottom of the sixth, though Joc Pederson was unable to extend the inning. The left-handed ace was back out on the mound for the seventh, and tossed a scoreless frame to complete his night of work.

Kershaw tied his season high with 10 strikeouts, but also gave up the five runs on 10 hits. Failing to pitch with a lead is what seemed to bother him most. “It’s a tough one to let get away. We had a 3-0 lead and my job is to keep it, so I didn’t do my job there,” Kershaw said.

“I felt like I was pounding the strike zone pretty good, and felt like I had more consistency with the breaking stuff. I didn’t really lose it in the sixth inning, I just gave up some hits. Give them credit.”