Welcome back to the Clayton Kershaw daily, where we look back at every game of Kershaw’s career, organized by date. He’s made one career start on April 23, and it was seven years ago.
The Dodgers on April 23, 2013 were reeling, having lost three series in a row, dropping seven of nine games. They were at Citi Field to open a three-game series against the Mets, with Kershaw starting the opener.
Kershaw retired his first eight batters in this one, but then completely lost it in the third inning. He walked two in a row with two outs, then successive singles brought both home. Kershaw walked another batter, the sixth straight Mets batter to reach base, before finally getting out of the inning. New York’s rally started when Kershaw walked Robert Carson, the opposing pitcher.
The third inning alone took 39 pitches, a big factor why Kershaw was lifted after just five innings. From my game recap:
The Mets were patient against Kershaw all night, and the unusually wild southpaw threw 111 pitches in walking a season-high four in a season-low five innings. But he allowed just two runs thanks in part to five strikeouts, including catching John Buck looking with a full count slider to end the fifth inning, Kershaw’s final pitch of the game.
Kershaw left a tie game, getting a no-decision. His four walks was a repeat of his previous start six days earlier. This was the last time Kershaw walked at least four batters in consecutive starts.
The Dodgers rallied for three runs in the seventh and two more in the eighth to win the series opener. This was the 154th start in Kershaw’s career.
The outing: 5 IP, 3 hits, 2 runs, 4 walks, 5 strikeouts
Up next: A 2010 start against the Nats