Clayton Kershaw has been compared to the legendary Sandy Koufax by Los Angeles writers and baseball writers in general. For many, the comparisons were too early, too soon and not merited, but that is changing as the Dodgers ace continues to excel on the mound.
When you watch Kershaw completely dominate modern-day batting orders, it seems easy to make the comparisons with Koufax.
On Thursday night, Kershaw continued his dominating ways shutting down the New York Mets 5-0. It was the second straight Kershaw complete game shutout at Dodgers Stadium and his 14th of his 9-year career.
The Los Angeles southpaw allowed only 3 hits on the night. With 96 pitches through the eighth, Dave Roberts the LA manager did not even consider letting another pitcher finish the game.
The decision by Roberts allowed Kershaw to reach his goal he sets for himself every five games.
Kershaw said, shaking the hand of the catcher is the goal, which comes after pitching a complete game win.
Kershaw added that you cannot do much more than pitch 9 innings, which makes that the goal every time out and when its accomplished it’s a good feeling.
Thus far, Kershaw is 5-1 with an ERA of 1.74. His 13 Ks of the Mets on Thursday gave him 77 on the season, which leads the majors.
It was his 250th start and now his career ERA is down to 2.40 over an impressive 1,673 innings. Kershaw’s only loss on the season was a five-run inning versus Miami in April. Take out just one inning and Kershaw has an ERA of just 1.03.
The pitcher catcher pairing of Kershaw and Yasmani Grandal saw some redemption in the shutout on Thursday. It was only the second time the two have paired all season, with the first being the loss in Miami.
The bond between Kershaw and A.J. Ellis has been well documented. However, as Ellis mentioned earlier this season, even a sportswriter could catch a Kershaw start and it would be effective.
Kershaw, as mentioned before, has 77 strikeouts, but more impressive is that his walk total is just four, yes FOUR. Over his last four starts, Kershaw has struck out 47 batters and walked just 1.
Baseball is full of stats, as is every sport in the U.S. However, this stat over Kershaw’s career is ridiculous. When Los Angeles scores four runs for Kershaw, while he is still in the game, the Dodgers are 81-0.
The comparisons with Koufax will continue, as it appears Kershaw is on his way to being the favorite for another Cy Young Award.