While many major league teams struggle to find just one ace for their pitching rotation, the Los Angeles Dodgers can justifiably say they have a pair of aces.
Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke form one of, if not, the best duo in baseball and have backed up that claim thus far. Both were named National League All-Stars and are near the top in most statistical categories.
Pitching coach Rick Honeycutt took some time to discuss his pitchers via Tracy Ringolsby of MLB.com:
What separates the best from the rest is work ethic,” said Dodgers pitching coach Rick Honeycutt. “The way they approach everything every day. They do everything well, not just pitch well. They are into the game. They understand it. They field their positions. They hold runners. And they are always listening and looking for ways to get better.”
Greinke is 11-4 with a 2.66 ERA and 119 strikeouts in 18 starts this season. He struggled a bit in the month of June, but enters Tuesday tied for the league lead in wins and fifth in strikeouts. Kershaw started the first game of the season in Australia and won before missing all of April due to injury. Even with the time out, the left-hander is still 10-2 with a 1.85 ERA and 115 strikeouts in just 13 starts. With his next start, he could reach the minimum amount of innings and take over the MLB lead for ERA.
Honeycutt continued his praise when explaining what makes them stand out:
You can have the stuff, but at this level, you can’t just turn it on at game time,” said Honeycutt. “There is the mental side. There are constant adjustments. Zack and Clayton have that ability in game to make adjustments.
“They know their roles. They go out there knowing they are supposed to pitch seven, eight, nine innings. That goes back to awareness. That’s not taught. They are baseball guys. It’s why they are No. 1s. They are off the chart in so many ways.”
With their 1A and 1B, the Dodgers will be considered favorites if they reach the postseason and could lead them to their first World Series win since 1988.
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