Clayton Kershaw was rusty in his first major league start in 75 days, lasting just three innings while allowing two runs on five hits on Friday night against the Marlins.
With only a single minor league rehab start, and a three-inning one at that, Friday was in many ways a major league rehab start, with an expanded bullpen at the ready to back Kershaw however long he lasted.
But after 66 pitches on a hot, humid night in Miami, manager Dave Roberts made the decision to pull Kershaw after three innings. SportNet LA cameras showed Roberts going to shake Kershaw’s hand in the dugout, indicating his night was done, but Kershaw was having none of it.
The civil disagreement ended with Roberts getting his way.
The Dodgers trailed 2-0.
Kershaw allowed a home run to catcher J.T. Realmuto, the second batter of the game, in the first inning, then plowed through a 29-pitch second inning that saw the Marlins tally three more hits and another run.
The breaking ball seemed to give Kershaw the most trouble, with Realmuto hitting a slider out to left field, and first baseman Chris Johnson singling home the second run on a hanging curve ball that had Kershaw yelling even before the ball glanced off Chase Utley’s glove into center field.
Kershaw did strike out five batters without a walk, giving him 150 strikeouts and nine walks on the season, the first pitcher in major league history to reach 150 strikeouts before walking 10 batters.