Vintage Kershaw beats Giants K’s seven in 2-1 pitchers duel

April 25, 2017

MLB, San Francisco Giants

Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw throws to a San Francisco Giants batter during the first inning of a baseball game Tuesday, April 25, 2017, in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

by Jeremy Kahn

SAN FRANCISCO-Giving Clayton Kershaw two runs is like giving most pitchers five or six runs, and this is why he is the best pitcher in the major leagues.

Kershaw allowed just one run in seven innings of work, as the Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the San Francisco Giants x-x before a crowd of 41,329, the 498th consecutive sellout at AT&T Park.

The left-hander struck out seven, walked just one and gave up six hit on his way to fourth win of the season against just one loss.

This was Kershaw’s 19th career win over the Giants in 36 career starts. The 36 starts by Kershaw against the Giants are the most by Kershaw against any other team in major league baseball.

Ty Blach pitched five strong innings for the Giants, as he allowed two runs, while scattering four hits, walking one and striking out two; however, it was the fourth inning that did the left-hander wrong.

Blach gave up three straight hits and those would be the only runs that the Dodgers would need in breaking their six-game losing streak at AT&T Park, somewhere they last won on June 11, 2016.

Corey Seager, Justin Turner, who extended his hitting streak up to 11 games and Yasiel Puig hit back-to-back-to-back singles. It was Puig’s single that drove in Seager, and then Adrian Gonzalez hit into a force play that scored Turner from third base.

Gonzalez’s fielder choice showed some heads up base running by Turner, as he beat Brandon Crawford’s throw from second base, when Nick Hundley was unable to hold onto the ball to give the Dodgers the lead for good.

Actually, Blach picked up his third career hit off of Kershaw in the bottom of the third inning, as he doubled over the head of Kike Hernandez in centerfield. It was the third career hit for Blach against, the exact same amount of hits as Brandon Belt.

Buster Posey also extended his hitting streak up to 11 games, as he singled off of Kershaw in the bottom of the third inning to score Blach easily from third base.

Christian Arroyo picked up his first major league hit off of Kershaw in the bottom of the first inning, as he singled to left field.

Dodgers number one prospect Cody Bellinger made his major-league debut, playing left field and went 1-for-3 with an intentional walk and an infield single off of Neil Ramirez in the top of the ninth inning

Kershaw retired 10 Giants in a row after Joe Panik singled off of him in the bottom of the fourth inning, and Gorkys Hernandez put an end to the streak when he singled in a pinch-hitting role in the bottom of the seventh inning. Turner put an end to the inning, as he made a great play at third base on a ball hit by Hunter Pence.

Things got interesting for the Giants in the bottom of the eighth inning, as Pedro Baez retired the first two batters he faced, and then was replaced by closer Kenley Jansen, who was greeted by Posey and Crawford, who both singled to put runners on the corners. Jansen then regrouped to get pinch-hitter Brandon Belt to strikeout swinging on a 3-2 pitch to end the inning.

Crawford was forced to leave the game after his single due to tightness in his right groin.

NOTES: Johnny Cueto looks get back on the winning side, as he takes the mound for the Giants against left-hander Alex Wood, who looks to improve to 2-0 on the season for the Dodgers.

On this date in Giants history, on April 25, 1969, Giants catcher Jack Hiatt drove in seven runs in a 12-8 win over the Houston Astros. Hiatt hit a two-run home run in the first inning, and then hit the eventual game-winning grand slam in the 13th inning.

As for the Dodgers, this is a special day in their team history as well. Forty-One years ago, then Chicago Cubs centerfielder Rick Monday saved the American flag from being burned on the field at Dodger Stadium.

The Santa Monica native joined the Dodgers the following season, and hit the most dramatic home run in Dodgers post-season history prior to Kirk Gibson’s walk-off home run in Game 1 of the 1988 World Series, as Monday hit a solo home run off of Steve Rogers of the Montreal Expos in Game Five of the National League Championship Series at Olympic Stadium on October 19, 1981.

Monday’s home run propelled the Dodgers to the World Series, where they would comeback from an 0-2 deficit to defeat the New York Yankees for their first World Championship since 1965.

The Santa Monica native joined the Dodgers the following season, and hit the most dramatic home run in Dodgers post-season history prior to Kirk Gibson’s walk-off home run in Game 1 of the 1988 World Series, as Monday hit a solo home run off of Steve Rogers of the Montreal Expos in Game Five of the National League Championship Series at Olympic Stadium on October 19, 1981.

Monday’s home run propelled the Dodgers to the World Series, where they would comeback from an 0-2 deficit to defeat the New York Yankees for their first World Championship since 1965.

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