Seven years ago tonight, one of the greatest to ever play the game of baseball pitched his greatest game as a big leaguer. On June 18, 2014, Clayton Kershaw etched his name alongside some of the most hallowed names in the history of the Dodgers. The 26-year-old tossed a no-hitter against the Colorado Rockies in one of the most memorable games of all time. If not for Hanley Ramirez, it might have been the single most dominant pitching performance of all time.
AJ Ellis was Kershaw’s favorite batterymate back then, catching most of his games. And Ellis was behind the plate for all 27 outs that evening when Kershaw had a date with history. AJ talked about that moment on MLB Network’s Intentional Talk and revealed the gift that Kersh handed him for calling the game of a lifetime.
It turns out, Kershaw carried on with a time-tested tradition.
Yeah, he was great. It’s that tradition the pitchers after the no-hitter, there was a nice watch that came my way so I’m very grateful, very thankful…the memories and some of the memorabilia we got to take away from that is definitely worthwhile as well…I will admit there’s been more than one time where I’ll pull up the very fast YouTube version of Vin Scully calling every out of that no-hitter.
Apparently, pitchers buying their catcher watches after big games is a sort of tradition in MLB. In fact, newer Dodger Trevor Bauer bought each catcher that helped him win the NL Cy Young award in 2020 a watch as a thank you of his own. But it must have been one heck of a watch that Kershaw bought AJ after that no-hitter, though Ellis never confirmed what kind of watch he received from the Dodgers’ ace.
It’s hard to believe that it’s already been seven years since that masterful performance. Kershaw was just a kid when he threw that no-no, and now he’s coming up on his mid-30’s pretty quick. Don’t blink Dodgers fans, time moves way too fast.