We learned before the game that we lost another starting player to injury. Mark Ellis, was placed on the disabled list, with an undisclosed left leg injury. Ellis was taken out on a take-out slide by Tyler Greene last night, in order to break up a double play. Ellis’s knee is swollen but not broken. The Dodgers gave him an MRI, and as soon as we find out more information, we will pass it along to you. Ivan Dejesus was called up to replace him, and Elian Herrera started at second base. Jerry Hairston is due back soon. According to sources, he is due back on Wednesday.
The Dodgers improved their home record to 18-4 and secured a series victory over the St. Louis Cardinals. NL Cy Young winner Clayton Kerhaw blanked the Redbirds, pitching his fourth career shutout, winning 6-0. Kershaw didn’t strike everyone out, whiffing only four batters, but was able to get lot’s of quick outs, as he made 117 pitches, and didn’t allow a runner to third from the third inning on. The Dodgers continue to get contributions from unexpected sources, as they score two runs in the fourth inning on a two-run error off the glove of Matt Carpenter, who was a late replacement for Lance Berkman who injured his knee while stretching for a throw.
The Dodgers added four more runs. A solo bomb from Justin Sellers, RBI singles from Ethier, and Gwynn, and another run scored on a wild pitch. The Dodgers now improve to an MLB best 27-13.
Hit Machine leads of the game with a fly ball to left field. Carlos Beltran who was moved up to second in the order, hits a pop fly to short, and reaches on a bumbling error from Bobby Abreu. Abreu had called off Sellers, but dropped the ball as it popped out of his glove. Matt Holiday, who kills the Dodgers year after year, hits a long fly ball into the right field corner, fortunately Andre Ethier races over to make the catch a few feet on front of the low wall. Lance Berkman pops out to end the inning.
Top of the second. Tony Gwynn leads off and reaches on an error from Tyler Green. If you remember, it was Green’s slide last night that took out Mark Ellis, so I didn’t shed a tear watching him bobble and drop a routine gounder. Elian Herrera was looking bunt, but instead produces the same results with a grounder to Green that advances Gwynn to second, who was running on the pitch anyways. Bobby Abreu grounds one off of Westbrook’s glove, who leaps to knock it down, then throws in time to retire Abreu. Moving to third is Gwynn. Andre Ethier slaps a ball to third, David Freese backhands the grounder to throw him out, and end the frame.
In the top of the second, David Freese sends Gwynn all the way to the warning track in center field. Yadier Molina singles to left. Tyler Greene grounds out to first. On the pay, Molina advances to second. Youngster Shane Robinson, softy lines out to Loney, and the Dodgers get out of it.
Bottom of the second. Last night’s hero, Adam Kennedy leads off, and whiffs. Loney flies out to Robinson, who makes a nice running catch in shallow center field. A.J. Ellis, the man the myth the legend, doubles down the right field line, to further fuel his all-star campaign. Justin Sellers grounds out to Furcal. On the throw, Berkman leans in to make the catch, and somehow hurts himself on the play. He is seen sitting on the ground wincing. He is forced to leave the game.
Top of the third. Jake Westbrook whiffs. Furcal grounds out to third. Carlos Beltran, a true annoyance, lines a double into left field. Matt Holiday, the thorn in the Dodgers side for many years, sends one to deep right field, sending Ethier to the warning track to make the catch. The Cardinals leave Beltran stranded. Bottom of the third. Kershaw grounds out to Furcal. Gwynn a fly ball to center. Elian Herrera whiffs to end the third, and we are still scoreless.
Top of the fourth. Kershaw whiffs Matt Carpenter, who is now at first base for the injured Berkman. Freese grounds to short. Molina grounds out to third. Kennedy charging in to make a good play, and Loney makes a nice pick on a bounce throw.
Bottom of the fourth. Abreu walks. Ethier smacks a double to left field, that bounces into the stands. Abreu has to stop at third. Remember with Berkman’s injury, Carpenter is at first base, and that injury would come back to haunt the Redbirds. Adam Kennedy, who had four hits last night, hits a sharp grounder to first, and off of Carpenter’s glove, and into right field. Abreu and Ethier both score, and the Dodgers take the lead 2-0. The grounder is ruled an error. The next batter Loney, flies out to left. Kennedy is picked off of first base by Westbrook, for an embarrassing Tootblan. A.J. Ellis doubles into the gap. Oh by the way, A.J. has now reached base in 28 consecutive games. Sellers whiffs on a called third strike to end the inning. The Dodgers pick up two, to take a 2-0 lead.
Greene leads off the top of the fifth, and softly loops out to Sellers, who makes a great running over the shoulder catch. Robinson grounds out to short. Westbrook whiffs, and it’s a nice easy inning for Kershaw. Bottom of the fifth. Kershaw grounds out to second. Gwynn grounds out back to the box. Herrera reaches on a bunt single. The throw from Westbrook was close though. Abreu whiffs on a full count for the third out.
Top of the sixth. Hit Machine whiffs on a called third strike. Beltran grounds out to third. Holiday reaches on an infield single to short. Sellers double clutches and his throw is offline. Then the Tootblan tables are turned on the Redbirds, as Kershaw picks of Holiday. Still 2-0 Dodgers.
Bottom of the sixth. Westbrook retires the Dodgers in order in the sixth inning. Top of the seventh. Carpenter flies out to Dre. Freese grounds out to third. Molina singles, breaking up the string of outs. Greene flies out to Abreu, and it’s still 2-0 Dodgers.
Bottom of the seventh. Westbrook is still in. A.J. Ellis grounds out. Sellers cranks a solo bomb into the left field pavilion seats. The Dodgers now lead by three. For Sellers it’s his first home run of the season. Sellblock power! Kershaw then doubles off of Holiday’s glove out in left field. Holiday tried to make an over the shoulder catch, but couldn’t hang onto the ball. Finally Mike Matheny comes out to hook Westbrook. He pitched well despite coming out losing. Westbrook goes 6.1 innings, allowing three runs, two earned, one walk, five whiffs, and 109 pitches. Eduardo Sanchez is the new pitcher. Gwynn smokes a base hit up the middle, to score Kershaw from second, to give the Dodgers a 4-0 lead. Gwynn takes second base on the throw home. Herrera’s groundout moves Gwynn over to third. Abreu walks. There is a wild pitch that bounces over Molina’s head, allowing Gwynn to score the Dodger’s fifth run. The hits keep on coming as Ethier singles up the middle, just underneath the glove of Sanchez. Abreu scores to make it 6-0 Dodgers. Kennedy whiffs to end the fun in the bottom of the seventh.
Top of the eighth. Robinson reaches base on an infield single. Pinch-hitter Tony Cruz immediately grounds into a 5-4-3 double play. Nicely done boys! Hit Machine flies out to right to end the eighth inning for Kershaw and the Dodgers. Bottom of the eighth. Brandon Dickson on the mound for the Cards. Loney doubles. A.J. Ellis flies out to right. Loney tags and goes to third. Sellers grounder can’t score Loney. Kershaw stays in and grounds out to end the frame
Top of the ninth. Beltran grounds out. Holiday singles. After Kershaw makes pitch number 117, Carpenter grounds into a game ending double play. The Dodgers win 6-0. Kershaw pitches his fourth career complete game shutout. Allowing six hits, no walks, and four whiffs. Remember Kershaw made his MLB debut against the Cardinals back on May 25, 2008. During that game he pitched six innings of two-run ball. Despite Kershaw getting a no-decision that day, the Dodgers still won.
Aaron Miles is now playing in Albuquerque, and stands ready to assist. He is the only healthy infielder left, but he is not on the 40 man roster. I expect him to be up with the Dodgers soon. Despite all of the injuries, the Dodgers keep winning. They will go for the sweep tomorrow night. Kyle Lohse will draw Chad Billingsley. Tomorrow’s game will be on at 5PM, and televised on ESPN. We will see you tomorrow Dodger fans. I love this season! Can’t stop the Blue!