With a 2-0 record and 1.74 ERA, Clayton Kershaw took the ball for the Los Angeles Dodgers Saturday in what was his third start since coming off the disabled list.
Kershaw was facing the Arizona Diamondbacks, a team he began the day with an overall career record of 8-6. The southpaw looked sharp in the first inning, first getting A.J. Pollock to fly out and then striking out Chris Owings and Paul Goldschmidt.
However, the second inning would be nothing along those lines for Kershaw. After issuing a four-pitch walk to Cody Ross, the Diamondbacks proceeded to hit three triples, one doubles and one single off the left-hander.
All five hits resulted in at least one run scoring on each and the Diamondbacks jumped out to a 6-0 lead in a matter of minutes. Kershaw walked Ross for the second time in the inning and manager Don Mattingly no longer stood by, deciding to remove the ace of his staff from the game.
With the uncharacteristic performance, questions naturally led to whether Kershaw may be dealing with some sort of injury. According to Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times, Mattingly reported a clean bill of health for Kershaw:
Mattingly: Nothing physically wrong with Kershaw.
— Dylan Hernandez (@dylanohernandez) May 18, 2014
By only going 1.2 innings, it marked the second-shortest start of Kershaw’s career. His shortest came in 2010 against the Milwaukee Brewers when the lefty managed to pitch just 1.1 inning. The seven runs allowed in one inning tie a high for Kershaw that was also set in the 2010 start against the Brewers.
Not one to make excuses, Kershaw didn’t offer much explanation for the rough outing in a post game interview on Time Warner Cable’s SportsNet LA. The reigning NL Cy Young Award winner simply tipped his cap to the Diamondbacks and said it was simply a matter of him being hit hard.
The loss dropped Kershaw’s record at Chase Field to 3-6.
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