When the Los Angeles Dodgers shuffled their rotation during their last road trip, it put Clayton Kershaw on track to start Friday’s series opener against the San Francisco Giants. He entered the outing 9-3 in 16 career games (15 starts) at AT&T Park with a 1.23 ERA.
Kershaw’s ERA in those games was the lowest all-time mark among pitchers who have made at least 10 starts in the stadium’s history. He was opposed by Johnny Cueto, who’s also pitched well at AT&T Park in his first season with the Giants.
Both clubs entered the contest 11-1 this year in games started by Cueto and Kershaw. Spotted a 2-0 lead in the first inning, Kershaw struck out the first batter faced.
However, he didn’t get out of the inning unscathed as Matt Duffy connected for a two-out solo home run. While Cueto proceeded to shut the Dodgers down, Kershaw did the same to the Giants.
He struck out the side in the second inning and got Jarrett Parker swinging in the third to give him four consecutive strikeouts. San Francisco did tie the game in the sixth on a Buster Posey RBI double.
However, Kershaw otherwise overpowered the Giants, finishing with 13 strikeouts over eight innings pitched. Video provided by the Dodgers’ Twitter account:
1⃣3⃣ Ks for Kersh tonight.
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) June 11, 2016
With the performance, Kershaw’s strikeout-to-walk ratio is back to an astonishing 20-to-1. He was rewarded with a victory as Justin Turner led off the ninth inning with a go-ahead home run, and Kenley Jansen entered in the bottom of the ninth to earn a save.