Clayton Kershaw came into the 2014 Major League Baseball season as one of the leagues best pitchers. He was the first pitcher to win two Cy Young Awards, before the age of 25, in Major League history. As of August first, the Los Angeles Dodgers all-star continues to make history in what has become a historic run of dominance.
Kershaw tossed his fifth complete game of the season, matching his career high from 2011, in a 2-1 victory over the Atlanta Braves. Kershaw gave up one run, on nine hits, while striking out nine Braves in what was his first career win at Dodger Stadium over the Braves. This also marked Kershaw’s tenth straight win in a run which he has dominated every team he has opposed.
In his last 11 starts, Kershaw is 10-0, while lowering his ERA from 3.32 to 1.71. Kershaw is the first pitcher since Greg Maddux in the 1994-95 seasons, to start the month of August with an ERA under 2. Kershaw has 104 strikeouts in those eleven games including a career high 15 in a no hitter against the Colorado Rockies on June 18th. Kershaw has also gone five games in that span without giving up a run, with two complete game shutouts. His only no decision came in the form of 3-2 win over the St. Louis Cardinals on July 20th. During this historic run the Dodgers have taken over first place in the National League West after being 9 1/2 games behind the San Francisco Giants in early June. Including a complete game, three hit shutout in which seven Giants struck out in a 5-0 victory in San Francisco.
For the Dodgers to maintain their lead in the division they will need Clayton Kershaw to continue his dominance. He is on a rapid pace for a 25 win season. He would become the first pitcher to win 25 games since the late Bob Welch accomplished the feat for the Oakland Athletics in 1990.
The combination of Kershaw and Zack Granke as the aces of the Dodgers rotation will be the main key for the Dodgers to make a serious World Series run in 2014 as the Dodgers have emerged as the National League favorites. If the Dodgers make it to the World Series it will be another feather in the hat for a pitcher who has dominated the National League for the last three seasons. Including two Cy Young awards, Kershaw could be on his way to a third straight award. It would be the most in League history for any pitcher at the age of 26.
As Kershaw takes the mound in August, he will be hoping for an endless summer as he looks to continue what has become an epic run for any pitcher.