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Clayton Kershaw does it all in Opening Day win over Giants

Apr 1, 2013, 7:12 PM EDT

Clayton Kershaw AP AP

Clayton Kershaw didn’t just dominate the Giants on the mound in today’s season opener. He also made some unexpected noise with his bat.

In a masterful performance, Kershaw tossed his sixth career shutout in a 4-0 win over the defending World Series champions. The 25-year-old southpaw held the Giants to just four measly singles while fanning seven and walking just one. He needed just 94 pitches to get the job done.

The Dodgers couldn’t get anything going against Matt Cain, so their ace ultimately had to take matters into his own hands. The game remained scoreless until Kershaw led off the bottom of the eighth inning with a solo home run to straight-away center field off George Kontos. Pretty good timing for the first home run of his major league career. In fact, it was also just his second extra-base hit in the big leagues. It was truly a surreal moment at Dodger Stadium. The Dodgers tacked on three more runs in the frame before Kershaw finished off the Giants in the top of the ninth.

Kershaw is the first pitcher to homer on Opening Day since Joe Magrane in 1988 and the first Dodger to do it since Don Drysdale in 1965. He’s also the first pitcher to throw a shutout and hit a home run on Opening Day since Bob Lemon did it for the Indians back in 1953. Today’s performance was pretty much Kershaw’s way of asking, “Can I have my $200 million now, please?”

Here’s the video of Kershaw’s home run:

  1. kingscourt25 - Apr 1, 2013 at 7:22 PM

    He allowed 4 hits. What a bum.

  2. moogro - Apr 1, 2013 at 7:22 PM

    The first Maddux of the year.

    • Jason Lukehart - Apr 1, 2013 at 7:39 PM

      And only the second Opening Day Maddux “ever” (by which I mean of the pitch count era, which dates to 1988).

      Who threw the only other one??? Bartolo Colon, in 2002 (for the Indians). Colon needed 98 pitches though, compared to Kershaw’s 94.

  3. zerodotjander - Apr 1, 2013 at 7:32 PM

    This was the first opening day shutout in MLB since Hideo Nomo did it, also for the Dodgers, in 2003. Surprise that factoid wasn’t mentioned in the post-game writeup.

  4. elmo - Apr 1, 2013 at 7:34 PM

    Must have been a Giants fan flipping the bird at about 0:28 of the clip.

    • kingscourt25 - Apr 1, 2013 at 7:41 PM

      Or a Dodger fan going all Stone Cold Steve Austin

  5. iamjimmyjack - Apr 1, 2013 at 7:36 PM

    Wow Cy Kershaw. Pay the man! Dodger stadium was rocking. Great opening ceremonies. It should be a fun season. Btw Brandon belt looked good out there backing up his trash talk. LOL!

  6. moogro - Apr 1, 2013 at 7:46 PM

    Craig’s analysis of Vin here tough to argue with.

  7. misterchainbluelightning - Apr 1, 2013 at 7:47 PM

    Kershaw is awesome while Cold Shambles is lol’able right now

    • tuberippin - Apr 2, 2013 at 12:45 AM

      Cole Hamels is twenty-nine years old going on thirty and has hit his prime. Clayton Kershaw is twenty-five years old and yet to hit his prime.

      Moreover, it’s one start. But hey, I love a good game of Jump To Conclusions.

      • misterchainbluelightning - Apr 2, 2013 at 11:49 AM

        You have trouble understanding the concept of “right now”. AKA Yesterday, as is Cold Shambles was not good yesterday, or am I jumping to conclusions again?

      • tuberippin - Apr 2, 2013 at 12:32 PM

        You appear to have trouble reasonably defining a specific period of time. “Right now” could mean any number of things. Could mean the present start, the past two weeks, the current season. If you meant the present start, then say today or the current start.

  8. tuberippin - Apr 1, 2013 at 8:11 PM

    This would never happen if the NL adopted the DH. Good thing they haven’t.

  9. butchhuskey - Apr 1, 2013 at 8:16 PM

    And some of you want the DH in the national league? For shame.

  10. decimusprime - Apr 1, 2013 at 8:29 PM

    Yes. Dodgers Win. $200 million dollar kid showed why he’s worth it. Got the W against last years champs and hit a dinger for a cherry on top. Go Blue Go.

  11. losanginsight - Apr 1, 2013 at 8:59 PM

    Great start of another Cy Young campaign. Hopefully there’s not another ephus pitcher that comes out of no where this season.

  12. Old Gator - Apr 1, 2013 at 9:03 PM

    Just one more reason why designatedhitterball sucks. Moments like that will be lost to the game forever, and the decerebrates can celebrate.

  13. manchestermiracle - Apr 1, 2013 at 9:20 PM

    A great start to the post-McCourt era. Keep it up, guys.

  14. chill1184 - Apr 1, 2013 at 10:42 PM

    “Im gonna get paid, Im gonna get paid, Im gonna paaaiiid!”

    – Clayton Kershaw

    • Old Gator - Apr 2, 2013 at 9:02 AM

      …and I’m gonna deserve it.

  15. gabrielthursday - Apr 1, 2013 at 11:15 PM

    Apparently it’s also Kershaw’s first career HR.

    I suppose he could have waited to break a scoreless tie to win the World Series, but this is a good second choice.

  16. lostsok - Apr 1, 2013 at 11:26 PM

    And in the off-season he and his wife fly to Africa to build an orphanage. How can you not root for Clayton Kershaw?

    • yahmule - Apr 2, 2013 at 9:35 AM

      The youngest ever Roberto Clemente Award winner and he’s just getting started.

  17. ch0psuey - Apr 2, 2013 at 1:08 AM

    That was a solid 400+ foot HR, no Cheapshot. He was grinning ear to ear around the bases, good for him.

  18. Gamera the Brave - Apr 2, 2013 at 10:44 AM

    (The curse below spoken as if by Kirk in “Wrath of Khan”)


  19. indianbob - Apr 4, 2013 at 8:21 PM

    Yeah, Giants shut your Dodgers out the next day and won the three game series in LA!
    If Posey didn’t break his leg in 2011, SF has three World Series in a row!!!

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