(Reuters) – Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw is enjoying a red-hot stretch that is helping him keep pace with the rest of the National League’s pitching dominance.
Kershaw turned in another brilliant effort on Wednesday when he tossed 7 1/3 innings and struck out 11 batters to hurl the Dodgers past the Arizona Diamondbacks 3-2.
It was a familiar sight for Kershaw (10-1) who has now won his last eight decisions and has not allowed more than two runs in any one of them.
“There is something to being able to win games,” Kershaw told reporters after his latest triumph.
“There are starters out there that find ways to win, and there are starters out there, too, that find ways to lose games. (Some) guys know how to do that better than others at times.”
In a league that is being defined by pitching, Kershaw is hardly the only thrower turning heads. His victory on Wednesday clubbed him with San Francisco’s Johnny Cueto, Washington’s Stephen Strasburg and the Chicago Cubs’ Jake Arrieta as 10-win pitchers in the NL.
But there is something uniquely authoritative about the way the three-time Cy Young winning Kershaw can impose his will on a game.
Kershaw has just seven walks in 108 innings this season and leads all of baseball with his 1.58 ERA, 133 strikeouts and three shutouts. He has not lost since April 26.
“When I look at the numbers in that context, it kind of baffles you and is kind of cartoonish,” said Dodgers manager Dave Roberts.
“It doesn’t ever seem like the right decision to go take the ball from Clayton.”
(Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; Editing by Amlan Chakraborty)