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Clayton Kershaw has now tossed 28 consecutive scoreless innings

Jun 29, 2014, 7:50 PM EDT

St Louis Cardinals v Los Angeles Dodgers Getty Images

Clayton Kershaw has had a heck of a month. He tossed a 15-strikeout no-hitter against the Rockies on June 18, and after today’s performance in which he held the Cardinals scoreless over seven innings, he has not allowed a run in his last 28 innings. Aaron Hill drove in the last run Kershaw allowed, doubling off of him in the third inning on June 13.

Kershaw wraps up the month of June with a 0.82 ERA, 61 strikeouts, and four walks in 44 innings. According to Baseball Reference, the only other pitchers to strikeout 60 or more while walking five or fewer in a month are Curt Schilling (62/2, May 2002) and Sandy Koufax (60/5, September/October 1963).

On the season, Kershaw is 9-2 with a 2.04 ERA, 0.92 WHIP, and a 107/11 K/BB ratio in 79 1/3 innings. He’s still 26 years old, by the way.

With the Giants suffering a sweep at home at the hands of the Reds and the Dodgers’ Kershaw-aided victory over the Cardinals, the two NL West teams are locked up in a virtual first place tie. As recently as June 8, the Dodgers were 9.5 games out of first place.

  1. bestintheworld92 - Jun 29, 2014 at 8:04 PM

    I’m a Padres fan but Clayton Kershaw is the best pitcher in this generation

    • stoutfiles - Jun 29, 2014 at 11:49 PM

      Well he’s not the best pitcher this year as of now. Johnny Cueto has a 1.88 ERA with 122 strikeouts.

      • stoutfiles - Jun 30, 2014 at 6:36 AM

        I’m not understanding the thumbs down here. Cueto’s WHIP is lower and he’s pitched more innings as well. At the moment Cueto would get the Cy Young, not Kershaw.

      • stex52 - Jun 30, 2014 at 8:14 AM

        If you were to freeze the numbers right now you are right, Cueto’s are better. And if he carries it forward to the end of the year, he is seriously in the conversation for Cy Young. But right now his ERA is under his FIP, suggesting he might step back a little as the season goes on. And the W-L record matters a lot to sportswriters, even though it really shouldn’t.

        Right now it looks like a horserace among Kershaw, Wainwright and Cueto for Cy Young. But unless he falters, I think Kershaw will get it.

        Sportswriters are sheep.

      • kastout11 - Jun 30, 2014 at 8:47 AM

        Do you really think Cueto is better then Kershaw?

      • stex52 - Jun 30, 2014 at 9:21 AM

        I don’t remember saying that. Right now Cueto’s stats are marginally better than Kershaw’s at this point in the season. And he has pitched a lot more innings. Will it be that way at the end of the year? I doubt it. But it certainly could be. Either pitcher could be injured in his next outing. Who knows?

        Kershaw is a pitcher of superlative talents. Right now Cueto and Wainwright are keeping pace with him on statistics. That is a fact.

        As to sportswriters being sheep, since when is that news?

      • drewy44 - Jun 30, 2014 at 9:34 AM

        Cueto always seems to be the bridesmaid, never the bride. Never gets the Cy Young love, even though his ERA has been incredible the past few years.

      • stex52 - Jun 30, 2014 at 9:37 AM

        Cueto’s not a likable guy. Kershaw is, in spades. I get that.

        What does that have to do with pitching stats?

      • roundballsquarebox24 - Jun 30, 2014 at 11:12 AM

        All of the thumbs down and lack of any facts to refute your statement tells us that this is just a a case of fans being fans. People like Kershaw and they don’t like Cueto. Simple as that. Unless there is another explanation that I am missing, because Cueto has been lights out. The numbers show that he has been just as effective if not more than Kershaw while throwing significantly more innings. I am willing to bet that a majority of the people on here down-voting your comment have never watched a Johnny Cueto start. Cueto, like Kershaw, is must-watch television if you are a baseball fan. I know this will probably be an unpopular comment but the truth is the truth..

      • stex52 - Jun 30, 2014 at 11:43 AM

        And we are not even discussing Wainwright, whose numbers are very similar.

      • DiscountGolfEquipment - Jun 30, 2014 at 12:23 PM

        Cueto will never get any love, from opposing players or opposing fans, due to him spiking Larue in the face against the Cards in 2010.

        Here is a link if anybody needs a refresher on what a turd Cueto is:http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20100810&content_id=13276098&vkey=news_mlb&c_id=mlb

        If you don’t have time to read it, here is the relevant paragraph:

        “This is where the fracas got particularly nasty. Reds third baseman and former Cardinal Scott Rolen, originally one of the peacemakers, appeared to get into it with Carpenter, too. Reds starting pitcher Johnny Cueto found himself pinned against the backstop and started kicking at players. Cueto connected his spikes in the face of Cardinals catcher Jason LaRue, who clearly had a gash above his left eye and whom La Russa said later had a slight concussion.”

        Spiking people in the face will never be forgotten by anybody.

      • stex52 - Jun 30, 2014 at 2:22 PM

        Juan Marichal popped John Roseboro on the head with a baseball bat. He didn’t even have the bad excuse of a general player fight going on. Just turned around and whacked him.

        In no way does that excuse Cueto’s action, but it is not very relevant to this discussion.

        No one ever disputed Marichal’s stats.

      • kingscourt25 - Jun 30, 2014 at 3:04 PM

        You do realize Marichal was kept out of the Hall for quite some time because of that incident right? He also never won a CY, despite being the 2nd best pitcher in the 60s behind Koufax. He also quit baseball because Dodgers fans would boo him every time he took the mound (Marichal pitched his last season for the Dodgers btw). Roseboro, the guy he hit, had to tell Dodgers fans to stop booing.

      • kingscourt25 - Jun 30, 2014 at 3:07 PM

        Anyways, you could say Cueto’s incident was worse since he ended the dude’s career.

      • stex52 - Jun 30, 2014 at 3:58 PM

        Perhaps I took the argument a little too far afield. I wouldn’t argue that one was much worse than the other. They were both pretty bad. Cueto may have felt threatened, but he never apologized or made up with Larue either, to my knowledge.

        I didn’t think three years was particularly long to wait for HOF induction from eligibility. But I didn’t realize until your note that Marichal was never in the serious running for the Cy Young. Based on performance alone, that boggles the mind.

    • wjarvis - Jun 30, 2014 at 5:05 AM

      He’s certainly on pace to be just that, but I think it’s a little early to say it. Kershaw appears to be getting better, and lets hope he doesn’t have the same injury problems that have plagued some other players such as Santana or Webb.

      Consider this comparison with Johan Santana who I don’t think people think of as best of a generation type of player. Johan Santana finally became a full time starter in 2004 so I’m comparing his first 5 seasons as a starter with Kershaw’s 5 plus seasons starting after his rookie year.

      Santana: 1142.2 IP, 1189 SO, 157 ERA+, 1.022 WHIP (2004-2008)
      Kershaw: 1151.2 IP, 1213 SO, 155 ERA+, 1.043 WHIP (2009-today)

      If you just want to look at their 3 best years it’s the same thing

      Santana: 693.1 IP, 748 SO, 166 ERA+, 0.963 WHIP (2004-2006)
      Kershaw: 697 IP, 709 SO, 167 ERA+, 0.971 WHIP (2011-2013)

      • stoutfiles - Jun 30, 2014 at 8:43 AM

        So given the thumbs up/down on comments actively debating how good he is using his stats, this is clearly a Kershaw love fest where logic is booed.

        He’s a great pitcher; that’s obvious, but he’s not earned the title of “best pitcher in this generation” at 26 with only five years under his belt.

      • yahmule - Jun 30, 2014 at 9:14 AM

        So, Santana’s accomplishments starting @ age 25 are as impressive to you as Kershaw’s starting @ age 21?

        Santana’s lowest ERA in a season ever is 2.53 in 2008. Kershaw’s ERA hasn’t been over 2.53 since 2010.

        Clayton only turned 26 a few months ago.

      • stoutfiles - Jun 30, 2014 at 10:42 AM

        And if Clayton puts up the same numbers heading into 30, I’ll jump on the bandwagon. As of now his resume is not long enough to be declared “the best pitcher of the generation”.

      • wjarvis - Jun 30, 2014 at 12:08 PM

        Age isn’t really relevant to the argument. The argument was whether he is the best pitcher of his generation, which is a judgment on a career. The fact that he has excelled at such a young age, means he has more potential to live up to that statement, but the point of comparing him to Santana was to show that a five year stretch of dominance isn’t enough to justify such a title.

        As for the impressiveness of dominating MLB hitters based on age, I find that a little ridiculous. So was Randy Johnson’s career less impressive since he didn’t really put it all together till he was 29? Each player has a different prime, simple as that.

        Yes Kershaw has a lower ERA than Santana, they played in different leagues and scoring is down across the board now, I used ERA+ to show that relative to their peers they had similar performances for similar stretches of time.

        A lot can and will happen in the next decade that will supply us with lots of ammunition for arguments about who the best player of this generation is. For the past few years Kershaw has been the best pitcher in the game, isn’t that enough for now.

      • yahmule - Jun 30, 2014 at 2:09 PM

        So he has to be dominant twice as long as Santana was for you to admit you’re wrong. Got it.

      • yahmule - Jun 30, 2014 at 5:59 PM

        Because he is the best pitcher of his generation, your reticence notwithstanding.

        Clayton Kershaw’s career ERA is 2.56, good for 52nd on the all time ERA list. The next closest current pitcher on the list is Adam Wainwright, whose 3.02 mark places him 176th.

        You have to go back to 1920 to find a pitcher with over 100 career starts and 1000 career innings to find a lower lifetime ERA.

    • apkyletexas - Jun 30, 2014 at 8:47 AM

      Especially since he’s just money in must win playoff games.

      Oh wait…

      • stex52 - Jun 30, 2014 at 9:16 AM

        Doubling down are we? Good luck with that one.

      • koufaxmitzvah - Jun 30, 2014 at 10:34 AM

        Gee, Kyle, just the other day it’s whenever Clayton faces the Cardinals. Now it’s whenever Clayton pitches in the playoffs.

        The important thing to remember is that you’re pretty gawdawful troll everyday you wake up and decide to comment on the Dodgers.

      • yahmule - Jun 30, 2014 at 2:41 PM

        He’s not only a moron about the Dodgers. This kid is five-tool stupid.

      • apkyletexas - Jul 2, 2014 at 7:26 PM

        Truth hurt much?

  2. acdc84 - Jun 29, 2014 at 8:13 PM

    Not saying he’s there yet, but the Koufax comparisons are more than valid.

  3. yahmule - Jun 29, 2014 at 8:25 PM

    Clayton is awesome and the Dodgers are sure having fun. Hyun-Jin Ryu was giggling like a little kid while Scott Van Slyke was putting out his hotfoot in the dugout.

  4. okwhitefalcon - Jun 29, 2014 at 8:34 PM

    Kershaw has become must see pitching with me, whomever he faces.

    Between this latest streak of dominance and the Cards continued offensive ineptitude I knew the game was over as soon as the Dodgers scored, 1-0 may as well been 100-0.

    • gibbyfan - Jun 29, 2014 at 8:50 PM

      Cards definitely not firing on all cylinders………….If Jay is hitting close to 400 against lefties I have to wonder what Mike is thinking in playing PB..I mean it’s not like they don’t need every bit of hitting they can get right now

      • okwhitefalcon - Jun 29, 2014 at 9:47 PM

        Matheny could have played Cardinals past – Edmonds, Flood, McGee etc or Cardinals future -Taveras, Grichuk, Ramsey, Piscotty, etc and it wouldn’t have made a difference today…

      • stlouis1baseball - Jun 30, 2014 at 10:17 AM

        Ignore the thumbs down Bob. It is apparent (8) of Peter Bourjos’ relatives are HBT readers.

    • stlouis1baseball - Jun 30, 2014 at 10:16 AM

      With you Falcon. The only thing I will add is…he was always must see for me.
      The kid is a stud. I like his game all the way through. Pitch selection, location, his timing.
      Dude brings the entire ball o’ wax, if you will.

  5. kash71 - Jun 29, 2014 at 8:42 PM

    Shame that most of the fan base can’t watch these games.

  6. kountryking - Jun 29, 2014 at 8:48 PM

    He’s young and certainly a top-notch pitcher. But I doubt he will ever surpass Don Drysdale let alone Orel Hershiser in scoreless innings. I also didn’t think Cal Ripken, Jr. would surpass Lou Gehrig’s consecutive games played record either.

    • nothanksimdriving123 - Jun 30, 2014 at 12:43 AM

      An awesome month, but like ‘king says, CK is not even halfway to Hershiser’s record of 59 innings. Drysdale’s record is different: 6 straight CG shutouts. Methinks Big D’s great-grandkids will still see that one in the record book.

    • beavertonsteve - Jun 30, 2014 at 1:40 PM

      Hershiser’s scoreless inning streak sure feels untouchable now that we’ve had 25 years and the closest anyone seems to be able to get is around 40 innings. If Kershaw manages to go another 8 or 9 scoreless in Coors we might be seeing something unbelievable.

  7. kingscourt25 - Jun 29, 2014 at 8:50 PM

    Sadly, his next start is at Coors. RIP streak.

    • moseskkim - Jun 30, 2014 at 3:50 AM

      Oh the team he just no hit? Yeah he should give up about 5 runs just cuz of the stadium.. Sure theres a higher chance he gives up a run but hes also on a crazy hot streak

    • yahmule - Jun 30, 2014 at 6:01 PM

      I was there for his CGSO in Coors last year.

      8~)

  8. joehahntpt - Jun 29, 2014 at 10:07 PM

    I’m not a Dodgers fan, but Kershaw’s starts are absolute must watch baseball. He is utterly unreal.

  9. thetxhammer - Jun 29, 2014 at 10:10 PM

    Agreed, I don’t blame him for skipping the derby on the idea that it could mess up his timing/swing; get paid, man.

    But saying it could affect your teams’ post-season chances? Kind of blew that excuse, chief…

  10. miguelcairo - Jun 30, 2014 at 4:57 AM

    Yeah…he’s the best.

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