Saturday, April 6, 2013
Quick take: Dodgers 1, Pirates 0
By Mark Saxon
LOS ANGELES -- His home run streak ended after one game, but Clayton Kershaw showed no signs of giving any ground on the mound.
Kershaw (2-0) dominated for seven innings of the Los Angeles Dodgers' 1-0 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Saturday night, giving him 16 scoreless innings to start the season.
If these first two starts are any indication, Kershaw can sleepwalk his way to another Cy Young. He didn't walk his first batter in 2013 until his 16th inning and he quickly picked off Russell Martin from first base. Through Kershaw's first 16 innings, he has allowed just seven baserunners and struck out 16.
The Dodgers' bullpen, although used sparingly, has been equally dominant. Dodgers relievers have not allowed a run or hit yet through their first 10 1/3 innings. Paco Rodriguez, Kenley Jansen and Brandon League got the final six outs to finish what Kershaw started.
The Dodgers' hitters, meanwhile, are in a collective fog. They couldn't do much damage against A.J. Burnett, but they had long enough at-bats to drive up his pitch count and get him out of the game in the sixth inning.
Their only run off Burnett came on Mark Ellis' RBI single through the hole into left field. That run was set up by a Carl Crawford stolen base, his second of the game.
Aside from Crawford, Ellis and Andre Ethier, the Dodgers' hitters have begun the season in a miserable funk. Luis Cruz (0-for-17) and Justin Sellers (0-for-14) remain hitless, and Matt Kemp is 1-for-18. He struck out in his first three at-bats Saturday, then hit into an inning-ending double play in the seventh.
After his final two at-bats, Kemp walked back to the dugout to a smattering of boos from a crowd of 39,446 fans.