Dodgers Dugout: Shouldn’t Clayton Kershaw be able to hold onto a 4-0 or a 7-4 lead?

Hi, and welcome to another edition of Dodgers Dugout. My name is . I sold my house and car, turned in all the recycling material I had, sold all my blood, mowed every lawn in the neighborhood, robbed a bank and raised a ton of money on gofundme and still can’t afford World Series tickets.

Game 5

—I had a strange feeling after Game 5 ended. I wasn’t mad or upset. I had just witnessed two great teams hit each other with body blow after body blow and watched two great teams take it and dish it back out. It was one of the greatest games in World Series history. The Astros are a great team. So are the Dodgers. And the series isn’t over yet.

—You can’t bash Brandon Morrow. He has pitched in 12 of the 13 postseason games for the Dodgers. His arm is obviously about to fall off. But he still wanted to pitch. That’s what you want from an athlete. It’s up to the manager to decide what’s best. Dave Roberts went with the guy who helped get them into the playoffs. But it was obvious from his first pitch that he didn’t have anything. Either Roberts should have been clued in by the bullpen coach, or he should have seen that Morrow had nothing and taken him out.

–I understand why he brought him in. His other right-handed options were Josh Fields and Ross Stripling, two guys he obviously doesn’t have faith in. But he could have gone to Tony Watson, a former closer who still seemed fresh.

–Either way, it’s easy to second guess after it happens. I can’t fault the decision to bring him in, only the decision to leave him in when Morrow was throwing beach balls up there.

—Why didn’t Chris Taylor score on that fly ball to right with one out? He thought the third-base coach was saying, “No, no, no” when actually he was saying, “Go, go, go.” Perhaps Chris Woodward at third should use two words that don’t rhyme with each other as his send or stay options.

–I’m not going to bash Kenley Jansen either. He looks dead tired out there. The whole bullpen is exhausted and really has been since Roberts took Rich Hill out after he pitched four great innings in Game 2. Some people have pointed out that this is a wrong assumption because the relievers haven’t thrown a lot of pitches. But they aren’t taking into account the times they warm up, and the fact that each pitch in the World Series is a high-stress pitch. It’s not like pitching an inning against the Phillies in game 100 of the season. Everyone’s adrenaline is amped up.

—So let’s talk about the elephant in the room. The Dodgers had a 4-0 lead in the fourth and had their ace on the mound. Clayton Kershaw. The guy who has won three Cy Young Awards and could win another one this season. So what does he do? He gives up a single, a double, a walk and a homer. 4-4 game. Then the Dodgers go out and score three more runs in the top of the fifth. No way the best pitcher on the planet gives up two big leads, right? Wrong. He gets the first two guys out in the fifth and then loses all of his command. Walk to George Springer. Walk to Alex Bregman. That’s it for Kershaw. He doesn’t even get out of the fifth. He now has a 4.50 ERA in 23 postseason games. And he’s getting paid more than $35 million.

Let’s face it, he has had some strong outings, but overall Kershaw has been a disappointment in the postseason throughout his career. The question is, why?

Does he get too amped up before the game? His control just goes to pieces in tight spots and everything he throws is up. He has given up eight home runs this postseason, the most in one postseason in major league history.

Let’s see how he compares with some other Dodger greats in the postseason:

Kershaw, 7-7, 4.50

Sandy Koufax, 4-3, 0.95

Don Drysdale, 3-3, 2.95

Don Sutton, 6-4, 3.68

Fernando Valenzuela, 5-1, 1.98

Orel Hershiser, 4-0, 1.71

It’s not a pretty picture.

–The other strange part of all this is I don’t feel the Dodgers are out of it. This series is going to go seven games, and with both teams not really sure who will start in Game 7, this series could end with the craziest game ever.

Cheap plug

Just a reminder that we now have three other newsletters you can sign up for. They work the same as this one, free of charge and emailed to you. Spread the word to your friends who are fans of these teams or sport. The new newsletters are:

Horse racing .

Lakers .

Clippers .

Game 6 preview

Astros vs. Rich Hill (includes playoffs)

Josh Reddick: .667 (2 for 3), 1 double

Alex Bregman: .500 (1 for 2)

Cameron Maybin: .400 (2 for 5)

George Springer: .333 (2 for 6), 1 triple

Carlos Beltran: .273 (3 for 11), 1 homer

Jose Altuve: .143 (1 for 7), 1 homer

Brian McCann: .091 (1 for 11)

Carlos Correa: .000 (0 for 5)

Marwin Gonzalez: .000 (0 for 6)

Evan Gattis: .000 (0 for 4)

Yuli Gurriel: .000 (0 for 1)

Pitchers: .000 (0 for 1)

Team: .194 (12 for 62), 1 double, 1 triple, 2 homers, 25 strikeouts.

Dodgers vs. Justin Verlander (includes playoffs)

Yasmani Grandal: .667 (2 for 3)

Joc Pederson: .500 (1 for 2), 1 homer

Chase Utley: .250 (2 for 8), 1 double

Logan Forsythe: .222 (2 for 9)

Austin Barnes: .200 (1 for 5)

Corey Seager: .167 (1 for 6), 1 homer

Yasiel Puig: .000 (0 for 6)

Justin Turner: .000 (0 for 6)

Andre Ethier: .000 (0 for 4)

Enrique Hernandez: .000 (0 for 3)

Chris Taylor: .000 (0 for 1)

Cody Bellinger: .000 (0 for 2)

Pitchers: .000 (0 for 1)

Team: .161 (9 for 56), 1 double, 2 homers, 11 strikeouts.

The World Series

All games start about 5:20 p.m. PT and are televised on Fox.

Game 6: Tuesday, Astros (Justin Verlander) at Dodgers (Rich Hill)

Game 7*: Wednesday, Astros (TBA) at Dodgers (TBA)

* if necessary

And finally

This needs no explanation. .

Have a comment or something you’d like to see in a future Dodgers newsletter? and follow me on .

Leave a Comment