Preview: Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers Begin Critical 3-Game Series With Rockies At Coors Field
Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers, Rockies
Russell Lansford-USA TODAY Sports

Following an off day, the Los Angeles Dodgers hit the road for the start of a 10-game road trip, with their first stop at Coors Field for a crucial four-game series with the first-place Colorado Rockies.


The Rockies are in the midst of a five-game winning and possess a 1.5-game lead over the Dodgers in the National League West standings. Los Angeles looks to bounce back from a disappointing series loss to the New York Mets at Dodger Stadium.

The Dodgers will be without the services of All-Star closer Kenley Jansen for the entirety of the matchup after his cardiologist recommended he skip the trip, and instead, rejoin the club next week in Cincinnati.

Clayton Kershaw takes the mound for his 22nd start of the season. He enters with a 6-5 record, 2.40 ERA, 3.01 FIP and 0.98 WHIP in 131.1 innings pitched, having struck out 127 batters compared to only 20 walks.

Kershaw was efficient in his last outing against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Sept. 1, allowing just four hits and two runs over seven innings pitched. It marked the eighth consecutive start in which the three-time Cy Young Award winner logged a minimum of six innings while yielding two runs or less.

Kershaw has been on a roll since the unofficial start of the second half, compiling a 3-1 record, 1.94 ERA and 0.83 WHIP across 55.2 innings pitched (eight starts). In that span, he has limited opposing batters to a meager .207/.222/.317 slash line.

The 30-year-old has yet to face the Rockies this season, but owns a lifetime 21-7 record, 3.22 ERA and 1.15 WHIP against them in 235 career innings (38 starts). He has typically struggled at Coors Field, however, as evidenced by a 4.65 ERA and 1.31 WHIP in 120 innings pitched (20 starts).

Colorado counters with Jon Gray, who looks to build off an impressive start against the San Diego Padres. In six innings pitched, he allowed seven hits and two runs in what amounted to his 11th victory of the season.

Gray enters at 11-7, having posted a 4.70 ERA, 3.59 FIP and 1.27 WHIP over 153.1 innings pitched this season (26 starts). He has garnered mixed results in his career against the Dodgers, pitching to a 3.78 ERA and 1.36 WHIP across 47.2 frames (nine games).

The right-hander last faced the Dodgers on Aug. 10 at Dodger Stadium, to which he yielded eight hits and four runs in 5.2 innings pitched. He was tabbed with a no-decision, as the Rockies went on to win the contest by a final score of 5-4.

Dodgers lineup:

LF: Joc Pederson
3B: Justin Turner
SS: Manny Machado
1B: Max Muncy
CF: Cody Bellinger
2B: Kiké Hernandez
C: Yasmani Grandal
RF: Yasiel Puig
P: Clayton Kershaw

Rockies lineup:

CF: Charlie Blackmon
2B: DJ LeMahieu
3B: Nolan Arenado
SS: Trevor Story
LF: Matt Holliday
1B: Ian Desmond
RF: Carlos Gonzalez
C: Drew Butera
P: Jon Gray