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Kershaw Can’t Hang On, Cardinals Advance to NLCS

Kershaw Can’t Hang On, Cardinals Advance to NLCS

Zoonar/Thinkstock(ST. LOUIS) -- Clayton Kershaw was on fire until the seventh inning.The Los Angeles Dodgers' ace had only allowed three base runners before giving up back-to-back singles and then a three-run home run to Matt Adams, which was enough to lift the St. Louis Cardinals over the Dodgers 3-2, sending the Birds into their fourth straight NL Championship Series.Kershaw, who was pitching on three days rest, finished the day allowing four hits, three earned runs, two walks, and nine strikeouts, as he falls to 0-3 with a 9.72 ERA in his last three playoff games.Cardinals starter Shelby Miller pitched 5 2/3 innings, allowing five hits and two runs, while striking out four.Trevor Rosenthal allowed two base runners in the ninth but got Carl Crawford to hit into a fielder's choice to end the game, earning his third save of the series.St. Louis will now take on the San Francisco Giants in the NLCS. Game 1 is Saturday night in St. Louis.

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Cardinals Rally, Beat Kershaw in Game 1

Cardinals Rally, Beat Kershaw in Game 1

Elsa/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- In a matchup that featured two of the top pitchers in the game, the St. Louis Cardinals won a 10-9 game over the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game One of the National League Divisional Series (NLDS) on Friday night. The Cardinals scored eight runs in the seventh inning to come from behind against Clayton Kershaw before holding off the Dodgers late.

It started out as a blowout in favor of Los Angeles, as they built up a 6-1 lead through five innings. After Randal Grichuk homered in the first to give St. Louis a 1-0 lead, the Dodgers quickly took the lead scoring twice in the third. Two more runs were added in the fourth before A.J. Ellis launched a two-run homer in the bottom of the fifth off Adam Wainwright.

Meanwhile, Kershaw was mowing down opponents striking out eight batters through six innings. The southpaw had only given up two hits, both solo home runs, going into the seventh inning. It was then that the Cardinals made their rally.

The first four batters of the inning would reach on Kershaw, culminating on a Matt Adams RBI single. Pete Kozma then struck out for the first out of the frame before John Jay singled in another run to make it a 6-4 deficit. After another strikeout got the Dodgers within an out of ending the inning, Matt Carpenter cleared the bases with a double, giving St. Louis a 7-6 lead and chasing Kershaw.

The Cardinals would go on to score three more runs when Matt Holliday homered off reliever Pedro Baez for a 10-6 lead. Los Angeles threatened to take the lead back in both the eighth and ninth innings. Adrian Gonzalez's two-run homer in the eighth made it a 10-8 ballgame, while an RBI ground out got the Dodgers within a run and put the tying score at third. However, Yasiel Puig struck out to end the ballgame and give St. Louis a 1-0 series lead.

Game Two of the NLDS is set for 9:30 p.m. on Saturday at Dodger Stadium. Lance Lynn (15-10, 2.74 ERA) gets the call for the Cardinals while the Dodgers send Zack Greinke (17-8, 2.71 ERA) to the hill.

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Kershaw Wins 21st, Dodgers Clinch NL West

Kershaw Wins 21st, Dodgers Clinch NL West

Jason Wise/MLB Photos via Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- The Los Angeles Dodgers clinched the NL West title for the second year in a row after a 9-1 win over the San Francisco Giants on Wednesday night.

Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw tossed eight innings, had 11 strike outs, improved to 21-3 and headed right into the clubhouse for the celebration.

"You can't take lightly what we did," a soaked Kershaw said. "You got to celebrate accomplishments and that's what we did. It's really fun to celebrate with these guys."

Kershaw hit his first career triple to tie the game at 1-1 in the fifth inning.

"It was tiring," Kershaw said of his triple. "I don't want to do that again. It'll take a double."

Manager Don Mattingly celebrated a division title as a manager for the second straight year and was proud of his team's effort all season.

"We want to win a world championship but the first step in that is winning your division," Mattingly said.

San Francisco's magic number to clinch a wild card spot went down to one game after the loss.

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Kershaw Wins 20th Game, Dodgers Clinch Playoff Spot

Kershaw Wins 20th Game, Dodgers Clinch Playoff Spot

Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images(CHICAGO) -- Despite only throwing five innings, Clayton Kershaw picked up his league-leading 20th win of the season as Los Angeles defeated the Chicago Cubs (68-86) 14-5 on Friday. It was the shortest outing in nearly four months for Kershaw (20-3), who was aided by his offense.

"Obviously, you want to go eight or nine every time and be the reason why your team won," Kershaw said. "But sometimes your team does it for you and you just have to be out there. So that was the way it happened today and I'll take it."

The Dodgers hit four home runs as a team, including two from catcher A.J. Ellis. In total, Los Angeles (88-66) racked up 13 hits against Edwin Jackson (6-15) who was making his first start since coming off the disabled list. 

Los Angeles also clinched a playoff spot with Pittsburgh's 4-2 win over Milwaukee. It's the second straight season the Dodgers will be in the playoffs as they hold a 3 1/2 game lead over San Francisco in the NL West.

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Clayton Kershaw Strikes Out 8, Picks Up 18th Win

Clayton Kershaw Strikes Out 8, Picks Up 18th Win

Jason Wise/MLB Photos via Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw picked up his 18th win on Monday night after he struck out eight in the Dodgers (82-62) 9-4 win over the Padres (66-77).

Kershaw pitched eight innings and gave up three hits and one run in the victory. He also got Rymer Liriano to strike out in the top of the eighth for the final batter of the night.

"It was a good night for us. There wasn't a whole lot of stress because we got some runs early -- and we haven't had too many of those," said Kershaw, who lowered his ERA to 1.67, which is an MLB-best. "Obviously when you get that big of a lead, you just want to pound the zone. I got some good plays defensively behind me."

Kershaw is 15-1 with six complete games in his last 18 starts.

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Kershaw Wins 11th-Straight Game

Kershaw Wins 11th-Straight Game

Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images(MILWAUKEE) -- Clayton Kershaw allowed just one run on six hits in eight innings of work, picking up his 11th consecutive win in a 5-1 victory over Milwaukee. The Los Angeles (67-52) southpaw struck out six and walked two in what his manager called a "struggle".

"It was a struggle for him all day long," said manager Don Mattingly. "It felt like he was working hard but he kept battling and giving us chances."

Kershaw (14-2) tied for the league lead in wins while lowering his earned run average to a National League best 1.78. He gave up the lone run in the first inning before watching his offense help avoid a sweep at the hands of the Brewers (65-53).

Adrian Gonzalez tied things up in the top of the third on a sacrifice fly, plating Kershaw, before Matt Kemp drove in the go-ahead run in the fifth. Kershaw even helped himself out, driving in a run in the eighth on a single. 

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Kershaw’s Scoreless Streak Ends, Dodgers Win

Kershaw’s Scoreless Streak Ends, Dodgers Win

Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Clayton Kershaw continued his dominant stretch, picking up yet another victory as he went the full nine innings on Thursday. However, the Dodgers southpaw's scoreless innings streak came to an end when Chase Headley hit a solo home run in the sixth.

The Dodgers (52-42) would win the game over San Diego, 2-1, as Kershaw allowed just three hits while striking out 11 batters. The hurler was again in complete control, keeping the Padres (40-52) off the board through the first five innings. Kershaw then got the first two outs of the sixth before Headley's solo shot tied the game at 1-1. That snapped a streak of 41.2 scoreless innings for Kershaw, fifth longest in the modern era.

"It was over the fence, so it was a mistake -- and it tied the game," Kershaw said. "When it's a game like that, one mistake can kill you. Fortunately for me, that one mistake didn't."

Los Angeles would get the lead back in the home half of the inning on Adrian Gonzalez' sacrifice fly. That helped Kershaw (11-2) win his eighth consecutive start. In each of those starts, the lefty struck out at least seven batters, making him the third pitcher in 100 years to accomplish that feat.

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MLB All-Star Teams Announced

MLB All-Star Teams Announced

Major League Baseball(NEW YORK) -- The 2014 Major League Baseball All-Star teams were announced on Sunday night. Toronto's Jose Bautista was the leading vote-getter among all players, garnering 5.6 million fan votes.

Joining Bautista in the starting lineup for the American League are Miguel Cabrera (Detroit), Robinson Cano (Seattle), Josh Donaldson (Oakland), Derek Jeter (New York), Nelson Cruz (Baltimore), Adam Jones (Baltimore), Mike Trout (Baltimore)  and Matt Wieters (Baltimore). Boston's John Farrell will be the manager after leading the Red Sox to the World Series last year.

Baltimore led the AL with three starters voted into the lineup. Wieters, who is injured and cannot play, was replaced by Kansas City's Salvador Perez. The Athletics boast the best record in the bigs and lead every team with six total selections. Other notables on the AL squad include pitchers Yu Darvish (Texas) and Masahiro Tanaka (New York) along with Yoenis Cespedes (Oakland) and Victor Martinez (Detroit).

The National League will be led by Yadier Molina (St. Louis) and Chase Utley (Philadelphia), each of whom will be making their sixth appearance in the midsummer classic. Paul Goldschmidt (Arizona), Aramis Ramirez (Milwaukee), Troy Tulowitzki (Colorado), Andrew McCutchen (Pittsburgh), Carlos Gomez (Milwaukee) and Yasiel Puig (Los Angeles) were also voted into the starting lineup.

Former Chicago Cubs pitcher Jeff Samardzija was voted a member of the NL squad but will not be allowed to pitch after being traded to Oakland. His spot was filled by Atlanta's Julio Teheran. The Dodgers Clayton Kershaw and St. Louis' Adam Wainwright headline the pitching staff for manager Mike Matheny.

The MLB All-Star Game will take place at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minn. on Tues., July 15.

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Kershaw’s Scoreless Streak up to 36 innings

Kershaw’s Scoreless Streak up to 36 innings

Dustin Bradford/Getty Images(DENVER, Colo.) -- Clayton Kershaw continued his torrid performance on the mound by throwing eight shutout innings on Friday night in Colorado. The southpaw has now extended his career-high scoreless innings streak to 36 in a row.

"You don't ever want to give up a run," Kershaw casually said. "I guess that's the goal."

The Dodger ace gave up just two hits in a 9-0 rout of the Rockies. He was supplied with more than enough offense as Los Angeles score three runs in the first inning. Yasiel Puig opened the scoring with a two-run homer in the first. 

Kershaw last allowed in the third inning at Arizona on June 13. The Major League record, 59 consecutive scoreless inning,  is held by former Dodger Orel Hershiser. Of the 36 scoreless innings tossed by Kershaw, he has thrown 17 of those frames against the Rockies. 

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Kershaw Fans 13 in Dodger Win

Kershaw Fans 13 in Dodger Win

Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Following his first career no-hitter, Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw continued his month of dominance with a 13 strikeout performance as Los Angeles defeated St. Louis 6-0 on Sunday afternoon. With seven shutout innings, Kershaw extended his career-best scoreless inning streak to 28 straight.

The Dodgers (47-37) provided more than enough offense for their stellar southpaw, scoring twice in the fourth before Andre Ethier's three-run homer in the fifth made it 6-0. St. Louis (44-39) struggled to muster much, if any, contact against Kershaw; they were held to just six hits in the loss.

Kershaw (9-2) dominated from the start, never allowing a runner to reach third base. The lefty also struck out at least one batter in each of his seven frames, walking just two. His night was capped by striking out Jon Jay and Matt Carpenter to end the seventh inning. The two-time Cy Young winner finishes June with a 6-0 mark and a 0.62 earned run average.

Los Angeles also moved into a virtual tie with San Francisco (46-36) atop the NL West standings. The Dodgers have won 12 of their last 16 games and were 9.5 games out of first just three weeks ago.

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Kershaw No-Hits Rockies

Kershaw No-Hits Rockies

Victor Decolongon/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Clayton Kershaw can add another feather to his cap: the 26-year-old Los Angeles Dodgers left-hander no-hit the Colorado Rockies Wednesday night, as the Dodgers blanked the Rockies 8-0.

Kershaw, who already is a two-time Cy Young Award winner, struck out a career-high 15 while walking none. He becomes the first pitcher ever to strikeout that many batters without allowing a walk.

The Dodgers' ace almost had the perfect game. In the seventh inning shortstop Hanley Ramirez fielded a Corey Dickerson grounder and threw wide to first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, allowing Dickerson to get on base. The play was ruled a throwing error and was the only blemish in Kershaw's 107 pitch masterpiece.

While Dickerson was the only man to get on base, he also ended the game when he struck out swinging sending the crowd at Dodger Stadium wild.

"To get to do it in front of this crowd with how excited they were, and how into it they were is pretty special," Kershaw said.

The no-hitter is the second of the season for the Dodgers. Josh Beckett threw one in Philadelphia on May 25. It's the first time since 1956 two Dodgers pitchers threw a no-hitter in the same season.

"I am so amazed," Kershaw said. "Beckett told me he was going to teach me how to do that, so I have Josh to thank."

Kershaw's no-hitter is the 22nd in Dodgers history.

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Goldschmidt Leads Rout of Dodgers

Goldschmidt Leads Rout of Dodgers

Christian Petersen/Getty Images(PHOENIX, Ariz.) -- Paul Goldschmidt had two home runs and six RBI's as the Arizona Diamondbacks routed Los Angeles 18-7 on Saturday. Clayton Kershaw (2-1) could not get out of the second inning, giving up seven runs in the loss.

"We hadn't really broken out this year and tonight we did," Arizona manager Kirk Gibson said. "Anybody they threw at us, we were patient, got good pitches to hit and hammered them."

Los Angeles attempted multiple comebacks, closing the gap to 9-7 in the top of the sixth inning. However, the Diamondbacks never let up, scoring nine unanswered runs over their final three at-bats. Goldschmidt blasted a three-run homer in the bottom of the seventh to make it a 13-7 game before adding a two-run shot in the eighth.

"It was nice because we hadn't been scoring much lately, this entire year," Goldschmidt said. "We've had better at-bats lately and tonight was a really, really good effort."

A.J. Pollock and Eric Chavez also went yard for Arizona while Martin Prado drove in three runs and Chris Owens finished a single shy of the cycle. Chase Anderson (2-0) got the win despite giving up five runs in five and one-third innings.

The Diamondbacks set franchise records for hits in a nine inning game (21), extra base hits (13) and triples with inning, doing it three times in the second. Meanwhile, Yasiel Puig's two-run homer set a Dodger record for consecutive games with an extra-base hit (9) and tied another franchise mark for consecutive games with an RBI (8).

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Kershaw Shuts Down Nationals in Return to the Mound

Kershaw Shuts Down Nationals in Return to the MoundJason Wise/MLB Photos via Getty Images(WASHINGTON) --  Clayton Kershaw may have spent six weeks away from the mound, but he looked like his old self on Tuesday night. In his first start since opening day, Kershaw pitched seven shutout innings as t...

Kershaw Will Miss at Least Another 2-3 Weeks

Kershaw Will Miss at Least Another 2-3 WeeksCameron Spencer/Getty Images(SAN DIEGO) -- Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw won't be ready to come off the disabled list on April 7. The Dodgers announced Tuesday that Kershaw will miss at least two to three weeks to deal with the...

Dodgers Place Kershaw on 15-Day DL

Dodgers Place Kershaw on 15-Day DLCameron Spencer/Getty Images(ANAHEIM, Calif.) -- For the first time in his career, Clayton Kershaw is heading to the 15-day disabled list. The Los Angeles Dodger has a swollen muscle in his left upper back that will force him to miss Sunday's game agai...

Kershaw Will Miss Next Scheduled Start

Kershaw Will Miss Next Scheduled StartJason Wise/MLB Photos via Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher and reigning NL Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw will miss his scheduled start Sunday against the Padres due to an inflamed muscle in his back. Kershaw ...

Dodgers Complete Clayton Kershaw Deal

Dodgers Complete Clayton Kershaw DealJason Wise/MLB Photos via Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- The Los Angeles Dodgers and Clayton Kershaw made official the largest contract in baseball history for a pitcher on Friday. Kershaw received a seven-year, $215 million deal that kept him from ...

ESPN: Dodgers Reach Record Contract With Clayton Kershaw

ESPN: Dodgers Reach Record Contract With Clayton KershawJason Wise/MLB Photos via Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) --  It looks like Clayton Kershaw will be calling the city of Los Angeles his home for years to come. According to ESPN, the Dodgers and Kershaw have agreed on a seven-year, $215 million deal.&nb...

Scherzer, Kershaw Win Cy Young Awards

Scherzer, Kershaw Win Cy Young AwardsMike McGinnis/Getty Images(NEW YORK) --  Even though he's only 25 years old, Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw is already piling up the hardware. For the second time in three seasons, Kershaw was voted the NL Cy Young Award winner.  He ...

Source: Kershaw Offered $300 Million Contract

Source: Kershaw Offered $300 Million ContractJason Wise/MLB Photos via Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The Los Angeles Dodgers offered ace starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw want amounts to a lifetime contract worth approximately $300 million earlier this season, according to an ESPN source. ESPN sources...
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