After losing the first two games of the four game series, the Los Angeles Dodgers were able to bounce back and beat the Arizona Diamondbacks Wednesday night to drop their magic number down to five to clinch the National League West. Clayton Kershaw took the mound Thursday afternoon with the opportunity to lower that even more, and send the Dodgers out on their road trip on a positive note. He was opposed by fellow left-hander Patrick Corbin.
Kershaw, who leads Major League Baseball in strikeouts, started off strong retiring the side in order in the top of the first striking out two. Corbin responded with a strong first inning of his own, also retiring the side in order.
The second inning wasn’t at all like the first for Kershaw, as he began the inning by giving up three straight hits allowing a run to score. Kershaw was able to limit the damage though, as he struck out the side to end the inning. With two outs in the bottom of the second A.J. Ellis hit a double over the left fielder’s head, but he could not be cashed in as Chris Heisey hit a line drive to deep left that Yasmani Tomas jumped up and caught to end the inning.
After getting a fly out to begin the third, Kershaw gave up a single, a walk and an RBI-single to Paul Goldschmidt to bring home Arizona’s second run of the game. Kershaw tried to come up with some offense of his own in the bottom half of the third when he landed a bloop single into left-center with one out. That was followed by a walk by Justin Ruggiano, but the Dodgers could not score as Justin Turner flied out to center to end the inning.
The fourth inning was once again a struggle for Kershaw, as he hung a breaking ball to leadoff hitter Brandon Drury and he launched a home run to left to add to the Diamondbacks lead making it 3-0. He struck out two more in the fourth, putting him at eight on the day.
Scott Van Slyke hit a single to left to get thing going for the Dodgers in the fourth. Ellis then followed with what looked like a double play ball, but went right through the legs of second baseman Aaron Hill putting runners at the corners. Corbin then struck out Heisey and Scott Schebler to end the inning keeping the Dodgers off the board.
CONTINUE READING: Dodgers’ Offense Breaks Through In The 5th