Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw pitches first career no-hitter

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error The potential for history takes place every time Dodgers left-hander Clayton Kershaw takes the mound.On Wednesday, that promise became a reality.The buzz steadily grew with each out recorded. Nine straight to start the game. Then 18 in a row.Not even a two-base throwing error by shortstop Hanley Ramirez to start the seventh inning could derail this magic. “We started scoring so many runs, I didn’t want to screw that up,” Kershaw said. “Just throw strikes. It was just so much fun. I can’t explain.“As far as individual games, this was pretty special, especially to do it at home in front of this crowd and seeing how excited they were. I haven’t thought about the ramifications of one of these things, but it’s special and I don’t want to take that history for granted.”It was the 22nd no-hitter in Dodger history and comes on the heels of Josh Beckett’s no-hitter on May 25 at Philadelphia, becoming the first time the Dodgers had two no-hitters in same season since 1956. And he was one out away from throwing the franchise’s second perfect game.“Beckett told me he was going to teach me how to do that,” Kershaw said, laughing.Kershaw threw his arms up in the arm and was embraced by catcher and close friend A.J. Ellis.Kershaw got doused by two buckets of sports drinks by Matt Kemp and Yasiel Puig. Then the team came out with their now famed bubble machine and did their new dance with Kershaw much to the delight of the crowd.Then Kershaw shared a warm embrace with his wife Ellen, who he was tipping his hat to at the end of the game.“It’s fun to celebrate with your teammates, and catchers take a lot of pride in something like this,” Kershaw said. “I know how hard he works. And he came up with a great game plan and kept them off-balanced. “Ellen was probably way more nervous because she did not have any control over it. We hugged and hung out after.”The crowd of 46,069 came to its feet in raucous fashion to start the ninth inning.D.J. LeMathieu hit a grounder to first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, who flipped to Kershaw covering first.Charlie Culberson lifted a harmless fly ball to Yasiel Puig in right field for the second out.Then Kershaw needed just four pitches to strike out Corey Dickerson for the final out.Overall Kershaw threw 107 pitches, 79 for strikes.“He doesn’t think about these kind of moments, but a lot of people thought it was just a matter of when,” Mattingly said. “He’s a player who deserves it. Our players would back that up. You like seeing good things happen to good people. He exemplifies everything you want from a teammate. He is special.”Kershaw began sitting all alone in the dugout in the fifth inning.Kershaw began receiving standing ovations after he struck out the side in the sixth inning.The crowd rose to its feet with two outs in the seventh and erupted in a loud roar when Kershaw froze Wilin Rosario with a wicked curve to end the seventh.Kershaw received another standing ovation when he came to bat in the eighth inning.Kershaw tied his career high in strikeouts when he fanned Drew Stubbs on three pitches to start the eighth for his 13th strikeout.Kershaw set his career high for strikeouts by fanning Josh Rutledge in the eighth inning, right after Rutledge lined a shot down the left-field line that was just foul.Kershaw won his fourth consecutive start and improved to 7-2 on the season.Kershaw had a pair of previous two-hitters — on May 29, 2011 against the Florida Marlins and on June 20, 2011 against the Detroit Tigers.Kershaw needed just 42 pitches to get through the first nine batters. He struck out five in that span, including Corey Dickerson looking to start the game and freezing Wilin Rosario on a beautiful 73-mph curveball.The hardest hit through the first nine batters was actually by Rockies pitcher Jorge De La Rosa, who hit a liner that was snared by third baseman Miguel Rojas.Kershaw helped his own cause in the fourth inning by fielding Dickerson’s dribbler, whirling and firing to first to just beat Dickerson.Kershaw fielded a comebacker by Josh Rutledge to end the fifth inning.Then Kershaw fanned the side in the sixth inning, overwhelming Kyle Parker, D.J. LeMathieu and pinch-hitter Ryan Wheeler (Torrance High) to give him 10 strikeouts after six innings.Kershaw shook off Ramirez’s throwing error thanks to a spectacular play by Miguel Rojas, who fielded a chopper by Troy Tulowitzki (Long Beach State) on the line and made a long accurate throw that was hauled in by first baseman Adrian Gonzalez.“Miggy made a great play and Adrian picked it,” Kershaw said. “I thought it was foul, but Miggy was right there for it. That was pretty special.”Kershaw also seemed to prop up Ramirez after the error. Ramirez charged hard, but his throw was off-target. Kershaw signaled to Ramirez everything was OK.“That was a really tough play. Under normal circumstances, that’s close to a hit,” Kershaw said.Ellis said Kershaw was not going to get rattled.“The thing not worry about Clayton is losing his edge or competitiveness,” Ellis said. “He has such a will to win. He’s competitive. He kept them off balanced and used his breaking ball with two strikes.”Maybe lost in the hoopla of history was the fact the Dodgers continued to make up ground on the Giants, closing within four games of the NL West leaders after trailing by 9.5 games as recently as June 8.The Dodgers swept the three-game series with the Rockies and completed an impressive 5-1 homestand. The Dodgers have won eight of 11 games overall. It is the first time they have swept the Rockies since winning the final three games of the 2012 season.Dee Gordon got the Dodgers off and running in the first inning.Gordon drew a leadoff walk, then stole his Major League-leading 37th base of the the season.Gordon was also so much of a distraction on the basepaths that De La Rosa made an errant pickoff throw into center field, allowing Gordon to take third base and score on Yasiel Puig’s towering sacrifice fly to center field for a 1-0 lead.Hanley Ramirez also drew a walk in the first inning and scored on Matt Kemp’s rifle RBI single to center for a 2-0 lead.Then the Dodgers exploded for five runs in the third inning, all with two outs.Puig drew a two-out walk, and the fireworks began. Adrian Gonzalez and Kemp hit back-to-back RBI doubles, and Rojas blasted a three-run double over Dickerson’s head in left field for a 7-0 lead.The Dodgers continued to pile on with Gonzalez dropping an RBI single to left field to score Ramirez in the fourth inning for an 8-0 lead.Kemp now has seven multi-hit performances in his last 12 games. He went 3 for 4 with two doubles, two RBIs and a run scored.Ramirez’s finger — bruised on a liner in Tuesday night’s game — did not seem to affect him much at the plate, getting a double, a sacrifice fly, a walk and a run scored. Carlos Triunful replaced Ramirez defensively in the eighth, but it might have been an inning too late.center_img Kershaw ventured into legendary territory with a performance that will likely go down as one of the most iconic in Dodgers history.Kershaw’s first career no-hitter.SEE PHOTOS | BOX SCOREKershaw delivered a commanding no-no by retiring 27 of the 28 hitters he faced and finishing with 15 strikeouts in an 8-0 victory over the visiting Colorado Rockies to complete a three-game sweep in historical fashion.It was the third most strikeouts in a no-hitter since 1900.last_img read more

I couldn’t stop star striker leaving Liverpool, admits Brendan Rodgers

first_img1 Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers has reiterated he had no opportunity to stop Luis Suarez leaving Anfield.The striker left Merseyside in the summer for Barcelona and Rodgers’ side has struggled in the wake of his exit.A serious lack of firepower has hit the team hard, with Daniel Sturridge hampered by injuries and Mario Balotelli well out of form.But Rodgers insists it was never his intention or choice to cash in on the £75m his side got for Suarez.“There was no decision,” he said after Sunday’s 1-1 draw with Chelsea.“Luis went and that’s obviously been the issue for us this season; our lack of goals has really hurt us this season.“But the players have done absolutely everything, it has been a long season for them and we hope to finish it well.” Luis Suarez in action for Barcelona last_img read more