Dodgers-Padres: No Help for Kershaw from LA Offense in 2-0 Shutout Loss

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Dodgers-Padres: No Help for Kershaw from LA Offense in 2-0 Shutout Loss

The Los Angeles Dodgers couldn’t buy a run in a disappointing 2-0 loss at the hands of the San Diego Padres on Friday night. 

Southpaw Wade LeBlanc fired a gem for the Friars, retiring the final nine batters he faced, as he used a devastating changeup to offset his mediocre fastball and stifle the Los Angeles lineup.

LeBlanc had a 9.58 ERA entering the game and the Dodgers made him look like Cy Young, as he fired six innings of two-hit shutout baseball. 

He, and the Padres (60-76) bullpen, did their best Harry Houdini impression by working out of multiple jams and holding the Blue Crew scoreless.

The futility began when the Dodgers’ (80-56) mounted runners at second and third with one out in the second inning, but couldn’t convert the opportunity when Brad Ausmus struck out and Kershaw fouled out to end the threat.

They again had a runner at second with one out in the third inning, only to see both Manny Ramirez and Matt Kemp bounce out to third, stranding Andre Ethier at second base.

In the fourth inning, LeBlanc walked Casey Blake and Ronnie Belliard to begin the inning. James Loney would advance Blake to third, but Ausmus struck out again and Kershaw grounded out.

With LeBlanc out of the game in the seventh inning, the Dodgers had two runners on for Ethier, yet he grounded to first base and left two men on the base paths.

But the lack of clutch hitting wasn’t quite done yet.

Making his Dodgers’ debut, Jim Thome lined an eighth inning single to move Kemp from first to third with just one out.

However, Belliard promptly popped out to shallow center field, not giving Kemp a chance to tag up and score. Loney came up next and flew out to deep left field to continue the ridiculous lack of focus with runners in scoring position.

When all was said and done, the Boys in Blue went 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position and left 10 men on base.

Dodgers’ starter Clayton Kershaw struggled through the first two innings, allowing two runs on four hits.

Kevin Kouzmanoff lashed a two-out RBI single in the first, and Nick Hundley rolled an infield single to plate a run in the second inning to stake the Padres to a 2-0 lead.

After laboring in the first two frames, Kershaw settled in nicely and tossed four no-hit innings. On the evening, he dealt six innings, throwing 106 pitches and walking three.

In fact, the Padres recorded only one hit after the second inning, but it wasn’t enough, as Kershaw earned a no decision. He is now winless in his past nine outings.

But the losing skid isn’t entirely the youngsters’ fault.

In his past 45.1 innings pitched, Kershaw has been given a measly 1.58 runs/nine innings.

The Dodgers’ pitching staff has now allowed five or fewer runs in 24 consecutive games, but the team has notched just a 13-11 record in that time, proving the inability to score runs of what should be a very potent lineup.

While the Colorado Rockies and San Francisco Giants each captured victories, the Dodgers faltering offense slipped up and now the Rockies have crept back within four-and-a-half games in the NL West.

Tomorrow, Los Angeles will turn to workhorse Randy Wolf (9-6, 3.25) against Mat Latos (4-4, 4.53) for a Saturday night showdown.

 

 

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WP: LeBlanc (1-1)

LP: Kershaw (8-8)

SV: Bell (34)

 

PJ Ross is a Featured Columnist for the Los Angeles Dodgers

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