After a rough opening day start in Colorado, we saw vintage Clayton Kershaw on Tuesday night in Oakland. He went 7 full innings and gave up only 4 hits on the way to his first win of 2021.
Following the game, all talk turned to the Dodgers’ home opener this coming Friday, where Kershaw and his teammates are scheduled to receive their World Series rings. This game marks the first time that the team will get to celebrate everything they accomplished last season, and it’s something that the veteran pitcher has been looking forward to.
“It’s been marked on the calendar for a while now,” Kershaw told reporters on Tuesday after the game. “I’m excited. I’m excited that we’re going to have a few fans there. I think that’ll be really cool. It’s kind of the first time we’ve all been together with fans to get to celebrate last year, so I’m very excited about it. Friday’s going to be really special for me for a lot of different reasons, and I finally get to see that ring. It’ll be pretty special.”
One thing that Clayton alluded to was realizing how much winning it all meant for those around him. Fans have been hoping and praying that Kershaw specifically would be able to add at least one ring to an otherwise hall of fame career, and it’s something that he is now fully appreciative of.
I don’t know the right word… it’s just a grateful feeling to know that so many people care about me in that way. That they wanted me to win so bad. And it’s maybe something I took for granted a little bit, realizing how much it impacted the people around me, especially my wife. I think she’s going to be pretty excited too.. It’s going to be a special day for sure.
While Clayton Kershaw won’t be starting the Dodgers’ home opener on Friday, it’s almost better that way. He can allow himself to soak in the moment rather than focusing on the opponent. Plus he’ll get to enjoy the well-deserved standing ovation when his name is called instead of warming up in the bullpen.
April 9th will always hold a special place for Clayton Kershaw, and he’s more than earned it. To be able to celebrate with fans in the stands is just the icing on the cake for the future Hall-of-Famer.