Kershaw Rules: Destination Dynasty
We saw Joe Torre use them last year in New York as Joba Chamberlain mowed down big league hitters like shredded wheat in his home state of Nebraska. Back then they were called The Joba Rules.
It seems Joe Torre has managed his way once again into the unique position of having the most sensational phenom pitcher in the league in his back pocket. So, should we be expecting to see ‘The Kershaw Rules’ anytime soon?
After pitching three innings of scoreless baseball against the Brewers yesterday, Clayton Kershaw left the game with six strikeouts while giving up just one hit and one walk. He dropped his team leading ERA to 0.90, making quick work of veteran players like Prince Fielder, Rickie Weeks, and Bill Hall. In 10 innings pitched this preseason, Kershaw is second on the club with thirteen strikeouts.
Kershaw, at 6ft3, 210 lbs, is a dominating presence on the mound with true ace-caliber stuff. He has devastated hitters in the minors and has been hailed as the second coming of Sandy Koufax.
Did I mention he just turned 20 last Wednesday?
Although blessed with these incredible attributes, it may take some time before the Dodgers really take the reins off Kershaw even despite the fact that he is way better than their next option at the fifth starter. As with any young pitcher, it is extremely important to give him time and not rush his development.
On the other hand, as many scouts will attest to, “When you’re ready, you’re ready”, and this kid may just be there.
As good as he is, it seems inevitable that Kershaw will be called upon to contribute to the big league club by the end of the season and maybe even before the All-Star break.
Remember, due to midseason injuries last year, Joe Torre called up 20-year-old phenom Phil Hughes to take over in the rotation in April as well as 21-year-old Joba Chamberlain for the bullpen in August.
Whether it happens sooner or later though, Dodger fans definitely have something worth getting excited about. With the emergence of Kershaw, Kemp, Loney, and Martin, Joe Torre could just be steering this ship towards a Dynasty similar to the one he engineered in NY not so long ago.