LOS ANGELES -- Clayton Kershaw had his shortest start of the season and even that was six scoreless innings and leaving with a 1-0 lead. The bullpen did their job holding the Braves scoreless and the Dodgers added three runs in the eighth to give the Dodgers a 4-0 win.
The win makes it sixth straight wins at home, the last time they won six in a row was between April 29th and May 12th 2015.
The last time Clayton Kershaw pitched just six innings and gave up no runs was May 23, 2014 when he and four relievers shut out the Phillies 2-0. Tonight, Kershaw gave up 3 hits, one walk, one hit by pitch and four strikeouts, that was good enough for his eighth win of the season.
Kershaw had thrown 96 pitches in his start but he had a 27-pitch sixth inning which may have tipped the scales for Kershaw's exit.
Joe Blanton came in to pitch the seventh. With one out, Adonis Garcia hit a looping liner to center. Joc Pederson slid and it was ruled a trapped ball. However, Nick Markakis, who singled to lead off the inning, ran back to first thinking the ball had been caught. The Dodgers threw to second and got a force out.
But then the play was reviewed and it appeared that the ball was caught. However, they decided to go with the force out since the result was the same, they just exchanged base-runners. Blanton would then retire the side.
Pedro Baez came in to pitch the eighth. Baez struck out two but those were the first and third out, the second out came after Ender Inciarte singled and then tried to steal second, he was called out on the field and the call was not overturned after replay review.
The Dodgers scored their first run in the third inning. Kershaw hit a grounder to the left of shortstop Daniel Castro, who fielded hit but the throw wasn't there in time. With two outs, Corey Seager walked and then Justin Turner singled to center to score Kershaw. Adrian Gonzalez grounded out to end the inning.
In the eighth inning, Turner led off with a fly ball single that was played into a double. Gonzalez grounded to first to move Turner the third. After an extended plate appearance with several foul balls, Trayce Thompson walked.
The Braves then brought in a left-handed pitcher, Ian Krol, to pitch to Joc Pederson. Pederson bunted for a hit, Turner scored to make it 2-0. The Dodgers then pulled off a double steal which led to the Braves walking Howie Kendrick intentionally to load the bases.
A.J. Ellis faced the Braves third pitcher of the inning, right-hander John Gant, Ellis hit a sacrifice fly and Trayce Thompson scored to make it 3-0. Yasmani Grandal hit a pinch-hit single to score Pederson and make it 4-0.
Kenley Jansen walked Freddie Freeman to start the ninth inning, which irritated him so much, he committed an error by tossing out a ball out of play before calling time. Jansen then recovered to retire the next three in order on a foul out and two strikeouts to give the Dodgers another shutout.
Dodgers conclude their season series with the Braves with Dodger left-hander Scott Kazmir taking on right-hander Matt Wisler. In Kazmir's last two starts, he has pitched 12 innings, allowed just a run and struck out 19. Wisler has pitched much better than his 2-5 record. Wisler took a no-decision in his April start against the Dodgers, he pitched 6⅔ innings, four hits, one unearned run, two walks and struck out six.
WP - Clayton Kershaw (8-1), 6 IP, 3 hits, 1 walk, 4 strikeouts
LP - Bud Norris (1-7), 5 IP, 1 run, 3 hits, 4 walks, 2 strikeouts