Dodgers @ Phillies August 17, 2013: When Will Clayton Kershaw Learn to Win?

August 17, 2013 at 6:43 pm | Posted in Game Threads | Leave a comment

citizensbankparkCan the Dodgers win ten straight for the first time since 2006? Or win 42 out of 50, for the first time in team history — and by anyone since 1942 — because that’s not a thing that should really happen ever? At this point, why not? With Clayton Kershaw on the mound against Kyle Kendrick and a reeling Phillies club that just fired Charlie Manuel and doesn’t have Chase Utley in the lineup, you’d think that it’d be nearly a given.

Then again, the Dodgers have won 18 of their last 20 games, and each of the two losses came with Kershaw on the mound. The first came against the Yankees on July 31 when Hiroki Kuroda was fantastic enough to best the Dodger ace; the second came on August 6 when Kershaw was fine but the Dodgers couldn’t do much against Joe Kelly. And… that’s it. Throw in a July 25 loss to the Reds (behind Zack Greinke), and that’s the entirety of the Dodger losses since the All-Star break, nearly one full month. It just never stops being overwhelmingly awesome.

Dodgers
Phillies
LF
Crawford
SS
Rollins
RF
Puig
2B
Frandsen
1B
Gonzalez
3B
Young
SS
Ramirez
LF
Brown
CF
Ethier
RF
Ruf
C
A.Ellis
CF
Wells
2B
Schumaker
1B
Mayberry
3B
Uribe
C
Kratz
P
Kershaw
P
Kendrick

Kershaw has a lineup behind him that includes Andre Ethier for the first time since Monday, and somewhat surprisingly has A.J. Ellis behind the plate. I say “surprisingly” because Ellis looked to be in pain when he took a foul ball off his knee yesterday, and with the lead the Dodgers have you’d expect that Tim Federowicz would be in today if only to get Ellis a day of rest. Ellis, however, has caught 154.1 of Kershaw’s 182.1 innings this year.

No news yet on Brian Wilson, who I still expect to be activated tomorrow. One item of note, per David Vassegh, is that first base coach Davey Lopes hasn’t exactly had the best homecoming to his former club in Philadelphia; he’s ill, and will be replaced as the first base coach by Jose Vizcaino tonight.

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