Dodgers News: Clayton Kershaw Not Fond Of Runner On 2nd Base For Extra Innings
Clayton Kershaw
Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY Sports

For a second consecutive night, extra innings were required to determine a winner between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field.

As was the case in the series opener, the Dodgers prevailed and came away with a 6-4 win over their National League West rival in 10 innings. That’s despite a less-than-stellar start from Clayton Kershaw, who struggled locating his pitches and putting batters away.

“Just not great. My fastball command was really bad and the slider wasn’t that good either,” he said. “Wasn’t getting many swings and misses, a lot of foul balls, so I need to work on those two things, for sure.

“But it all starts with commanding my fastball better. I basically just lost it in that inning. I need to figure it out quick for the next one.”

Kershaw registered season-lows in both strikeouts (three) and strikes thrown (57) on Wednesday. Despite not having his best stuff, he prioritized keeping the score close to give the Dodgers a chance.

“Just knowing that our team is going to win a game as long you just keep it close. It’s not like we’re going to get shut out very often or just have an off night offensively,” he explained

“You just try to limit it as best you can, know you’re on a really good team and stuff like tonight happens where you end up winning a game.”

Kershaw was pulled after five innings with the Dodgers and Diamondbacks knotted in a 4-4 tie. L.A.’s bullpen locked it down from there, giving the offense an opportunity to take advantage of the new extra-innings rule.

Corey Seager began the 10th on second base and shortly advanced to third via a wild pitch. He ultimately scored the go-ahead run when Chris Taylor singled to left field.

Despite the Dodgers benefitting from the new extra-innings rule, Kershaw hopes it is abolished after this season. “It’s not real baseball, but it’s fine for this year,” he said. “I hope we never do it again.”

AJ Pollock is open to it this year but also against the new extra-innings rule staying beyond 2020. “I don’t know why they did it. I think for this year, because it was a shortened season, my feeling was if you have those long, long extra-inning games, then you don’t have that many off days,” he said.

“Maybe you can kind of avoid the four- and five-hour games and get the game over quick, so I’m OK with it. If we’re going to do it all the time, I don’t know. There’s upside.

“It’s tough when you play a five-hour game and maybe it’s a getaway day and you’re getting in at 3 or 4 o’clock in the morning, you’ve got to keep playing and you don’t have an off day for two weeks.

“The negative is it’s a different kind of thing. It doesn’t really feel like anything we’ve ever done.”

While Kershaw and Pollock are in opposition of the new extra-innings rule, other Dodgers such as Mookie Betts have spoken highly of it.

Dave Roberts welcomes runner on second base

With their 6-4 win over the Diamondbacks, the Dodgers improved to 5-1 in extra-innings games this season. Manager Dave Roberts believes the team has excelled in these situations.

“I was a proponent initially going in. I didn’t really know how it was going to play out and how it was going to be received, but as we’ve kind of had some runs with this, I really like it,” he said.

“I think it does shorten the game, it adds the strategy for the fans, managers, the players. I think it’s playing out pretty well and I think our guys have done a really good job in that situation.”

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