Washington Nationals Rapid Reaction: Nats Start West Coast Trip On Bad Note

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Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Kershaw Dominates Nats Lineup Again

For the second time in less than a month, the Nats’ offense had to go up against Clayton Kershaw and it ended up being the same result. In eight innings of work, Kershaw gave up no runs on three hits, struck out 11, and walked one on 101 pitches (71 strikes). Out of the 27 batters he faced, 23 of them saw a first pitch strikes.

For the first five innings, Kershaw had a perfect game going and the Nats weren’t making much contact against him. He had his fastball and breaking ball working for him all night. According to Brooks Baseball, Kershaw had 38 strikes out of the 50 fastballs he threw and the Nats swung and missed at six of the 23 curveballs he threw.

While Michael Taylor would eventually break up the perfect game with a double in the sixth, the Nationals did not have many chances to score. Kershaw got great defense from Enrique Hernandez on a ground ball by Yunel Escobar in the sixth inning to keep LA in front.

One inning later, Anthony Rendon led off the inning with a single to left. However, Kershaw re-grouped and struck out Bryce Harper, Ryan Zimmerman, and Jayson Werth (all swinging) to end the inning.

Finally, if you go by the game score statistic, Kershaw’s start last night was not as dominant as the one on July 18 when he struck out 14 batters over eight scoreless innings. His game score that day was 90 while his score last night ended up being 84. Still, it was an excellent start for Kershaw.

Next: Taylor Only One To Figure Out Kershaw