With their backs against the wall, the Los Angeles Dodgers are sending ace Clayton Kershaw to the mound on three days’ rest hoping he can keep their season alive and send the NLDS back to Dodger Stadium.
Kershaw is throwing Game 4 of the NLDS yet again and the Dodgers are facing elimination at Citi Field on Tuesday night. Brett Anderson threw just four innings in Game 3, allowing six runs and the Dodgers fell by a final score of 13-7. They will face left-handed rookie Steven Matz in Game 4, looking to put some runs on the board in the early innings in support of their leader.
According to J.P. Hoornstra of the LA Daily News, manager Don Mattingly isn’t holding back the reigning MVP on Tuesday night:
Don Mattingly says this will be a "normal start" for Clayton Kershaw in terms of innings/pitches/limits. #Dodgers
— J.P. Hoornstra (@jphoornstra) October 13, 2015
Last season, Kershaw threw 102 pitches in six-plus innings in St. Louis, but was scoreless until the seventh inning. In eight pitches, the then 26-year-old went from a 2-0 lead to a 3-2 deficit. In 2013, the left-hander threw 91 pitches in six innings against the Atlanta Braves.
In Game 1 of this year’s NLDS, Kershaw threw 113 pitches in six-plus innings. He had allowed just one run through six innings, but walked three batters in the seventh and left the game with two outs. Pedro Baez allowed a two-run single right after and Kershaw ended up being charged with three runs and the loss.
The Dodgers will be playing for their season on Tuesday and Kershaw will go as long as he is effective; however, the Dodgers do have a rested back end of the bullpen as Chris Hatcher and Kenley Jansen have not pitched since Saturday.