Clayton Kershaw tossed a quality start for the Dodgers in game 2 of the NLDS. However, sometimes that’s not enough — especially when someone is dealing the way Stephen Strasburg was.
6 innings pitched with 6 hits and 3 earned runs allowed might pass in the regular season, but in the postseason, it’s a different story. Kershaw agrees. Moreover, Kershaw places the blame on himself for giving the Washington Nationals the early 3-0 advantage.
— L.A. Times Sports (@latimessports) October 5, 2019
The lefty was critical of his ability to get outs early.
You just get leadoff hitters out — that’s huge. You get leadoff hitters out to start innings, that’s really big — definitely minimizes damage.
He doubled up on that one, which gives you an idea of where his mind it. Indeed, in the first two innings, he allowed a double then hit a batter which set the Nats up to score. Unfortunately for the Dodgers, Washington capitalized.
Kershaw didn’t serve up a home run in this game. Instead he uncharacteristically hit two batters. He hit two batters total all season long in 2019.
Nevertheless, he did his part to keep his team in the game — something he did time and time again during the regular season — and plainly got out pitched by a dominant Strasburg. ESPN’s Alden Gonzalez adds to the narrative on Kershaw.
A PSA for those who haven't watched much Dodgers and are tweeting about Kershaw choking in the playoffs again: He's had a ton of these starts all year. He gets in trouble early, limits damage, and most nights, he finds a way to keep his team in the game. It's just who he is now.
— Alden Gonzalez (@Alden_Gonzalez) October 5, 2019
The Dodgers head to Washington tied 1-1 with the Nats in the NLDS. Game 3 will take place on Sunday and will feature NL Cy Young hopeful Hyun-Jin Ryu potentially against Max Scherzer.