Clayton Kershaw takes the mound Wednesday night at Dodger Stadium, looking for win number 19, and trying to help the Dodgers stave off a sweep at the hands of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Kershaw seized the major league lead in ERA in his last start, Friday in San Francisco, but fellow National League Cy Young candidate Roy Halladay threw down the gauntlet earlier on Wednesday with a shutout of Houston. Halladay's ERA of 2.34 now leads the majors, narrowly ahead of Kershaw (2.359), Johnny Cueto (2.363), and Justin Verlander (2.364).
For Kershaw to surpass Halladay tonight, he will need to do one of the following against Arizona:
- Allow no runs in 2 1/3 innings or longer
- Allow one run in six innings or longer (exactly one in six innings will leave Kershaw and Halladay with equal numbers of innings and earned runs on the season)
- Allow two runs in 10 innings or longer
Kershaw also needs eight strikeouts to pass Verlander for the major league lead.
Putting aside the relative unimportance of pitcher wins for a moment, if Kershaw can avoid any landmines in his final three starts he will post one of the best winning percentages in Dodgers history. Here are the most wins by a Dodger pitcher with five or fewer losses:
|Most Wins By A Dodger With 5 Or Fewer Losses|
Kershaw was also named on Tuesday as the Dodgers' nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award, which recognizes the major leaguer who "best represents the game of baseball through positive contributions on and off the field." In addition to his breakout season on the mound, Kershaw has donated $100 for every strikeout this season through Kershaw's Challenge to help build orphanages in Zambia.
Kershaw will be honored on the field before Thursday's game. The winner of the award will be announced during the World Series. The only Dodger to win the award, which has been given annually since 1971, was Steve Garvey in 1981.
Ethier Undergoes Surgery
Andre Ethier had arthroscopic surgery Wednesday morning to clean up the wear and tear behind his right kneecap. The surgery, which lasted 35 minutes according the Dodgers, was performed by team physician Dr. Neal ElAttrache in Los Angeles. Ethier will begin his rehab within the next week in Arizona, and the recovery period is expected to last six to eight weeks.
Game Time: 7:10 p.m.
TV: Prime Ticket