The Dodgers have sent three players to Petco Park in San Diego for the 2016 MLB All-Star Game on Tuesday night. Our first profile is of the player most familiar to these proceedings, ace Clayton Kershaw, who won't play in the midsummer classic due to injury.
How he's an All-Star
Kershaw received the most votes of any National League starting pitcher from his fellow players, with 370 votes, narrowly beating Cubs starter Jake Arrieta (362 votes).
Before getting sidelined with a mild disc herniation in his lower back, Kershaw was the easy favorite to start for the National League in the All-Star Game, something he still hasn't been selected to do. Kershaw was also arguably the leading NL MVP candidate, at 11-2 with a 1.79 ERA in 16 starts, with 145 strikeouts and a crazy nine walks in 121 innings.
At the time Kershaw was placed on the disabled list on July 1, Kershaw led the majors in ERA, innings and innings per start (7.56), second in the majors in strikeouts and tied for second in the NL in wins.
Kershaw is the first Dodgers player to be named an All-Star in six straight seasons since Fernando Valenzuela in 1981-86. He joins Valenzuela and Sandy Koufax (1961-66) as the only Dodgers pitchers to be an All-Star in six straight years.
The only Dodgers pitcher with more total All-Star seasons is Don Drysdale with eight (1959, 1961-65, 1967-68).
In his previous five All-Star Games, Kershaw has thrown one inning in each game, allowing a total of two runs on five hits with two walks and three strikeouts in five innings. Both runs allowed came in 2015 in Cincinnati, with Kershaw getting hung with the loss in the National League's 6-3 defeat.
In 11 career starts in San Diego, Kershaw has a 1.92 ERA with 74 strikeouts and 22 walks in 70⅓ innings, allowing more than two runs only once. In his one Petco Park start in 2016, Kershaw struck out nine in seven scoreless innings, allowing only a single and a walk in a record-setting 15-0 opening day win by the Dodgers.