Trying to shake a three-game losing streak, Clayton Kershaw took his 5-0 record and 1.62 ERA in seven starts against the New York Mets to the mound on Friday, at Dodger stadium. Another night of limited run support for Kershaw (2.6 runs avg. in his last five starts), the Los Angeles Dodgers dropped the first game of a three-game series 2-1 to New York.
It was the start of a weekend featuring some of the league’s top arms, beginning with Kershaw vs. Mets rookie’ Noah Sydergaard. So runs will likely be hard to come by. Kershaw struggled with his command early on, walking two batters in the first inning, something he hadn’t done since the 2013 season. As always, though, the left-hander found a way to work out the kinks.
The Dodgers got on the board first in the second inning, when all-star Adrian Gonzalez took advantage of the rookie pitcher’s mistake. It was a changeup left in the middle of the plate that Gonzalez tagged for his 14th home run of the season. It was the only run Syndergaard would allow and the first of just two hits, as he finished six innings, with a total of six strikeouts.
New York scored one run off Kershaw in the fourth inning, taking advantage of John Mayberry Jr.’s lead-off double. Two batters later, with Mayberry on third after a wild pitch, Wilmer Flores cashed him in on a single that snuck past the outstretched gloves of Howie Kendrick and Gonzalez into right field. Kershaw’s night ended after seven innings, allowing one run on five hits, with seven strikeouts and two walks.
Los Angeles missed out on a huge opportunity in the sixth inning, with runners on first and second, with one out. Gonzalez lined out to center field, and then Yasiel Puig followed with a strikeout to end the inning. The Dodgers finished the night going 0-for-5 with runners in scoring position and left five base runners stranded.
The Mets winning run was delivered in the ninth inning, off of Dodgers closer’ Kenley Jansen, surprisingly. Lucas Duda led-off the inning with a double that dropped just fair down the right field line. Flores followed with an infield-single off Jansen’s glove, setting up Kevin Plawecki’s sac-fly that gave New York the 2-1 lead and eventual win.
Tomorrow night’s pitching matchup will feature the New York’s Matt Harvey and MLB ERA leader Zack Greinke.
WP: Hansel Robles (2-2, 4.37)
LP: Jansen (2-1, 1.93)
SV: Jeurys Familia (22)