Clayton Kershaw and Jacob deGrom both labored through the first inning of Monday’s matchup between the Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Mets, which in essence set the tone for their respective outings.
Although the Dodgers and Mets only scored one run to open the game, Kershaw threw 23 pitches and deGrom needed 25 to get through the first inning. Cody Bellinger’s home run in the third gave the Dodgers a 2-1 lead but it was squandered in the fifth when Kershaw surrendered a two-run shot.
He was pinch-hit for in the bottom of the sixth inning with the Dodgers trailing 3-2. They proceeded to rally against the Mets bullpen, scoring six runs in that frame and tacking on insurance in the eighth to secure a 9-5 comeback win.
Kershaw lamented his performance and praised teammates for offsetting some of his struggles, as seen on SportsNet LA:
“I mean, I felt terrible. It was a terrible game for me all the way around. I could’ve very easily given up five runs. There was just nothing good about it. So thankful to be on a great team. Not many guys get that opportunity to pitch like that and get a win, no less. All the way around, the offense picked me up, defense picked me up. Can’t say enough about our whole team in general and can’t really say anything good about me today.”
By coming from behind against the Mets, the Dodgers extended their winning streak to 16 games in Kershaw’s starts. Beyond the onslaught at the plate, he was particularly aided by the Dodgers outfield throwing out three baserunners.
Cody Bellinger cut down Michael Conforto on his attempt to score in the first inning. A relay of Joc Pederson, Corey Seager and Russell Martin prevented Tomas Nido from scoring in the fifth. Then in the eighth, Bellinger caught a fly ball in deep right field and fired a strike to third base for an inning-ending double play to get the Dodgers out of a bases-loaded jam.
While it was another quality start for Kershaw, the six innings marked his shortest outing since going that many against the San Diego Padres on May 3. The 10 hits Kershaw allowed are a season high.
His ERA rose to 3.46 but Kershaw nevertheless improved to 5-0 this season.