Tuesday’s game between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Chicago White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field appeared to be a mismatch between a heavyweight and featherweight.
The Dodgers, owners of the best record in the Majors, were on a nine-game winning streak and in the midst of a 29-4 stretch. The White Sox were losers in their past four games and well out of the picture in the American League Central division and Wild Card.
Of course, games are not played on paper, and the Dodgers and Clayton Kershaw had to pull themselves off the ropes on multiple occasions.
Kershaw wound up throwing seven shutout innings, at times laboring, and finishing with seven strikeouts against one walk. Kershaw improved to 11-0 in his past 14 starts.
White Sox starter Miguel Gonzalez nearly matched the three-time Cy Young Award winner. He too worked out of jams, including twice leaving the bases loaded. Gonzalez induced three double plays within the first five innings.
The Dodgers nonetheless managed to get to the right-hander in the first inning, behind Cody Bellinger’s RBI single. That wound up as the lone run scored in the game.
Pedro Baez was aided by Yasiel Puig laying out for a terrific diving catch on a sinking line drive to rob Melky Cabrera of an extra-base hit hit.
Had Puig come up empty, Baez would’ve faced a situation with the tying run in scoring position and nobody out. Instead, Baez went on to throw a scoreless eighth inning and Kenley Jansen followed suit in the ninth.
The Dodgers now have a second 10-game winning streak this season, marking the first time in franchise history since Brooklyn produced 10- and 11-game winning streaks in 1955. What’s more, the Dodgers’ 30-4 stretch is a franchise best over a span of 34 games.