MIAMI – There was a time not so long ago when every Clayton Kershaw start brought with it the possibility of something special happening.
It still can.
Kershaw struck out the first seven batters he faced, retired the first 14 in order and allowed just two hits in seven scoreless innings as the Dodgers beat the Miami Marlins 9-1 Wednesday night.
The seven consecutive strikeouts to start a game fell one short of matching the major-league record shared by Jacob deGrom (2014), Jim DeShaies (1986) and German Marquez (2018).
Kershaw struck out eight of the first nine Marlins, nine of the first 11 and had the 61st double-digit strikeout game of his career at the end of the fifth inning.
Harold Ramirez ended his nascent perfect-game bid with a two-out single in the fifth. The Marlins had just two more baserunners against Kershaw – on a Corey Seager error in the sixth and an infield single in the seventh. Neither runner advanced past first base.
In two starts against the Marlins this season, Kershaw allowed four hits and struck out 20 in 13 scoreless innings.
Kershaw has now pitched at least six innings but no more than seven in each of his 21 starts this season. The victory Wednesday was the 165th of his career, matching Sandy Koufax’s career total. Kershaw’s 165 wins came in 339 games (337 starts), Koufax’s in 397 career games (314 starts).
Along the way, the Dodgers’ offense continued to batter Marlins pitching.
Justin Turner homered in the first inning. Cody Bellinger followed with a bunt single against the shift and Corey Seager hit a two-run home run.
In the fourth inning, rookie Edwin Rios hit a line drive over the wall in center field for his first major-league home run. Two innings later, he hit a bomb deep into the upper deck in right field for his second major-league home run and the Dodgers’ 10th of the series.
It is the ninth time in franchise history the Dodgers have hit 10 or more home runs in a three-game series. They have one more game at Marlins Park to chase the franchise record of 12 set May 21-23, 2002 against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park.
Rios and Turner each finished with three-hit games. Turner has four home runs in the past three games and 12 in his past 31 games after hitting none in his first 28 games this season (and nine in his first 81).
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Source:: Daily Times