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Clayton Kershaw starts opener against Rockies

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Tries to snap a long losing streak for a second straight start

Arizona Diamondbacks v Los Angeles Dodgers Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

LOS ANGELES -- With one wild card contender leaving town, the Dodgers welcome another to town with the Rockies in Los Angeles for four games beginning on Thursday night.

Colorado comes to town having just won a series at home against the Giants, though even counting that the Rockies have lost five of their last seven games. Or as the Dodgers might call it, the Rockies are on fire.

The Rockies are in second wild card position, 7½ games behind the surging Diamondbacks, two games head of the Cardinals, and 2½ games ahead of the Brewers.

Clayton Kershaw has won his last 12 decisions — the Dodgers have won his last 16 starts — the longest streak for the team since Burt Hooton also won 12 straight in 1975. The Dodgers are an absurd 20-2 in Kershaw starts this season, and one of those losses was to the Rockies, when Kershaw allowed four runs in six innings on Apr. 8 at Coors Field.

That was the only Dodgers loss in Kershaw’s last 15 starts against the Rockies, dating back to Sept. 2, 2013. During that time, Kershaw is 13-1 with a 2.20 ERA, 117 strikeouts and 16 walks in 98⅓ innings.

Last time out, Kershaw pitched six scoreless innings to snap a five-game Dodgers losing streak. On Thursday, the Dodgers try to snap a six-game skid.

“There’s really nothing to say, but we’ve got to find a way to win a game,” manager Dave Roberts said. “The last time we won was when Clayton took the mound.”

In 11 starts following a Dodgers loss in 2017, Kershaw is 9-1 with a 1.41 ERA, 93 strikeouts, and 12 walks in 76⅓ innings.

Jon Gray has a 3.75 ERA in seven career starts against the Dodgers, with 47 strikeouts and 18 walks in 36 innings. That includes one run allowed in 5⅓ innings at Coors Field in a no-decision in that Apr. 8 game against Kershaw.

In a weird twist, Gray has pitched better against the Dodgers in Denver. He’s 0-3 in three starts at Dodger Stadium, with a 5.52 ERA — nine runs and 15 hits allowed in 14⅔ innings.

Game info

Time: 7:10 p.m. PT

TV: SportsNet LA, MLB Network