Dodgers 5 9 0
Phillies 0 3 3
WP- Kershaw (12-7)
LP- Kendrick (10-10)
HR- Uribe (7)
Once again I was unable to watch the Dodgers defeat their foes on Saturday night thanks to the Time Warner Cable/CBS stand-off. Yet there is one thing that translates well across any form of media whether on television, radio, print, or online: Clayton Kershaw‘s dominance. The sensational southpaw has a 1.40 ERA over his last 10 starts and a 1.80 ERA overall on the season. Kershaw, the clear frontrunner for the 2013 Cy Young Award, picked up his twelfth victory of the season after pitching eight shutout innings against the lowly Philadelphia Phillies. Kersh whiffed eight, walked one, and allowed just three hits to Philadelphia in the game two win. Even though Kershaw had to wiggle out of an eighth inning jam, he did so by striking out Carlos Ruiz. The magnificence of Clayton Kershaw really cannot be fully described in words. He’s our generation’s Sandy Koufax. You’ve heard that comparison before, but Kershaw’s talent is one in which is rarely seen in Major League baseball or any sport for that matter. My dream is to see Clayton Kershaw pitch in the World Series, and this year may truly be ours to do so.
By winning their 10th game in a row, the Dodgers are now 25-3 since the All-Star Break, and 42-8 in their last 50 games which ties the best 50-game stretch by any MLB team since the 1942 Cardinals. The Dodgers are now tied with Pittsburgh for the second-best record in the National League (72-50), and they lead the Arizona D-backs by 8 1/2 games. This is the most incredible run I have ever witnessed in my lifetime, and I have been a Dodger fan since the day I was born. I wasn’t lucky enough to see the teams of the 1960’s and 1970’s, but my uncle told Scott and I about them while growing up. This Dodger team could be the best squad of our adult lives, and while 1988 still lives on in infamy within my memories I have been waiting a long time to experience the majesty of Blue destiny once again. It’s been a long time, Dodger fans. We deserve this.
With a series win against the Phillies, the Dodgers continue their journey to October. They have not lost a series since June in Pittsburgh. Game two may not have been the most perfect Dodger game (we did see a couple of TOOTBLANS), yet the excellent pitching really prevailed all. It also helped that the Phillies are pretty awful. They made three errors in the game which proved costly. Charlie Manuel, who was let go before the start of this series, must be glad that he no longer has to deal with all this losing. It’s quite a shame that they fired Manual mid-season after his 1,000th win as a manager. The Phillies could have let Manual finish off the season with dignity in my opinion. It really isn’t his fault that Philadelphia as a lackluster lineup and in need of a roster revamp. Ryne Sandberg began his managerial career with two losses to the Dodgers, and he may even be swept in his first series if the Boys in Blue capture their 11th win in a row on Sunday.
The Dodgers scored quickly in the top of the first as Carl Crawford and Yasiel Puig singled back-to-back right out of the gate. Then Phillies error #1, a fielding error by John Mayberry, allowed Adrian Gonzalez to reach safely and Crawford to score. Puig is later out at home when he tries to score on a ground ball hit by Andre Ethier.
The Dodgers score again in the top of the fifth. Juan Uribe, a growing favorite by Dodger fans, doubles with one out. Then Clayton Kershaw proceeds to double to left field, and Uribe brings in the second Dodger run! The Dodger pitchers have been
very impressive with the bat this year which is an overlooked aspect to the team’s success.
Clayton Kershaw is absolutely perfect through four innings, but the Phillies finally collect a hit off the left-hander in the bottom of the fifth with a Domonic Brown lead-off single. Yet Kershaw erases Brown on the base path by picking him off of first base while Casper Wells is at-bat! That’s Kershaw’s fifth pick-off of the season. He does everything well.
The second Phillies hit comes in the bottom of the sixth, but it’s just a meaningless John Mayberry single.
Kyle Kendrick, who pitched admirably yet didn’t overpower, is done after six innings. He allowed 2 runs on 7 hits with just 1 strikeout and no walks on 92 pitches. B.J. Rosenberg takes over for Kendrick in the seventh. Other than a walk to Uribe, Rosenberg is able to pitch a scoreless frame.
Kershaw pitched another 1-2-3 inning in the bottom of the seventh, but he begins to tire in the eighth. He starts off by striking out Darin Ruf, but then Casper Wells doubles on a line drive to left field. That’s Philadelphia’s last hit of the game though. Kershaw walks Mayberry, and with Ruiz at the plate a wild pitch by Kersh allows the runners to advance to second and third. Don Mattingly had a chat with Kershaw before the Ruiz at-bat, and he left Kersh in with utter confidence. Kershaw rears back to strike out Ruiz to end the inning and the threat! Kershaw is just so incredibly good even after 100 pitches.
Luis Garcia comes out of the Philadelphia bullpen for the top of the ninth. Hanley Ramirez leads off with a single, and Ethier flies out. With A.J. Ellis at the plate, a wild pitch moves Hanley to second base. Then Hanley gets a little greedy, and he is caught stealing third. Davey Lopes was out sick today, but I’m not sure what affect that had on the Dodgers running game tonight. A.J. draws his signature walk thereafter, and Skip Schumaker is hit by a pitch. Then the Dodgers Comeback Player of the Year, Juan Uribe, proceeds to crush a three-run homerun to left field! The Dodgers take a 5-0 lead. Uribe ends up with 3 hits, 3 RBIs, and 2 runs on the night. Uribe has been great this year, and he is the second best defensive third baseman in the league as well.
With a nice cushion of a lead, Brandon League will pitch the bottom of the ninth in order to give Kenley Jansen some rest. The bewildered reliever actually pitches a very nice 1-2-3 inning and the Dodgers win!
There’s no stopping the Blue!