A night after Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw threw his first career no-hitter, the left-hander’s performance is being heralded as one of baseball’s best. Kershaw fanned 15 batters without issuing a walk, which is a first in a no-hitter.
As he’s been for plenty of Kershaw’s starts, his battery mate in the historic start was A.J. Ellis. The Dodger catcher was interviewed by Jay Mohr Sports on Fox Sports Radio about Kershaw’s dominance and the experience of being behind the plate for a no-hitter.
With the victory nearly in the bag after the fifth inning, Kershaw and Ellis began to attack the Rockies offense with a different strategy:
We kind of focused on pitching a little bit differently. Pitching more for strikeouts, pitching more to a different type of game plan and see if we could get this thing done.”
Ellis also praised Kershaw’s command of his pitches:
I’ve never caught him on a night where his slider and curveball were both at the top of its form. Usually its one or the other, but to have both of him going anything is possible.”
The catcher then discussed the dominance Kershaw had on the mound and pointed to Kershaw’s competitive nature that he exudes on days he starts:
We’ve got to give Clayton all the credit. This guy dominated from the fifth inning on. He’s like this character actor who every fifth day he turns into this different animal and he’s so locked in and so competitive. He doesn’t want to have any small talk any banter at all.”
Ellis credits Kershaw on his performance, but his defensive efforts were recognized as well. In the ninth inning, Ellis went crashing into the owners box attempting to catch a foul ball, which he said was part of his dedication to end the game and secure the no-hitter.
The Dodgers have Thursday off and will resume play against the San Diego Padres on Friday.
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