Watch Clayton Kershaw Pass Sandy Koufax for 3rd on Dodgers' Strikeout List

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistAugust 2, 2019

Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw throws during the first inning of the team's baseball game against the San Diego Padres on Thursday, Aug. 1, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

It doesn't get much better than passing Sandy Koufax on an all-time list of anything when it comes to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

That is exactly what Clayton Kershaw did during Thursday's contest against the San Diego Padres, striking out Austin Hedges in the top of the sixth to move ahead of Koufax for third on the Dodgers' all-time strikeouts list with 2,397:

Los Angeles Dodgers @Dodgers

2,397 Ks. @ClaytonKersh22 moves ahead of Sandy Koufax for third all-time in franchise history with his 2,397th career strikeout. https://t.co/oOmDiVE9Ng

That leaves just Don Sutton and Don Drysdale ahead of him with 2,696 and 2,486, respectively.

ESPN Stats & Info @ESPNStatsInfo

Clayton Kershaw now has 2,397 strikeouts in his career, moving him into 3rd place in @Dodgers history passing Sandy Koufax. Kershaw passed Koufax in just 337 games. The only pitchers with more strikeouts in Dodgers history are Don Sutton (2,696) and Don Drysdale (2,486). https://t.co/y38gUKFnPj

They are both well within reach in the near future for the southpaw considering he has struck out more than 200 batters in seven different seasons. Surpassing Koufax is another notch on Kershaw's surefire Hall of Fame resume that already includes a National League MVP, three NL Cy Young Awards, five ERA titles and eight All-Star Game nods at the age of 31.

There is one thing missing that Koufax has three of—a World Series ring.

Koufax was a two-time World Series MVP during his Hall of Fame career, something Kershaw would likely gladly trade his strikeout marks for. The 2019 Dodgers are once again on the short list of contenders with the best record in the National League at 71-39, and Kershaw will have the chance to anchor the rotation on another October run.

Los Angeles reached each of the last two World Series only to come up short. Changing that postseason narrative is the next step remaining in Kershaw's career arc as he continues to climb record books.