OK, this is getting a little ridiculous at this point.
Clayton Kershaw extended his scoreless streak to 36 innings last night by allowing just two hits over eight shutout innings in a 9-0 victory over the Rockies at Coors Field. We don’t see many shutouts at Coors Field, but of course, Kershaw isn’t your usual pitcher.
Kershaw struck out eight batters and walked just one in the victory. 17 of his 36 consecutive scoreless innings have come against the Rockies, as he threw his no-hitter against them back on June 18. He has allowed just 18 hits with a 45/5 K/BB ratio during his streak. The Dodgers’ ace now sits at 10-2 with a 1.85 ERA and 115/12 K/BB ratio in 87 1/3 innings over 13 starts this season.
As for his scoreless streak, it’s third-longest in Dodgers history. Don Drysdale threw 58 consecutive scoreless innings in 1968 before Orel Hersisher established the new MLB record with 59 straight scoreless innings in 1988.
Manager Bud Black has tabbed Jon Gray to start on Opening Day for the Rockies. That will be Monday, April 3 in Milwaukee against the Brewers in an afternoon contest.
Gray, 25, is starting Opening Day for the first time in his career. He’ll be the sixth different Rockies pitcher to start Opening Day in as many years.
The Rockies and Gray had a bit of a scare on Friday as he left his spring training start with discomfort in his left foot, but everything came up clean in an MRI. He pitched again on Wednesday with no issue.
Last season, Gray went 10-10 with a 4.61 ERA and a 185/59 K/BB ratio in 168 innings. A consensus top prospect entering each of the previous three seasons, Gray surprisingly put up better numbers at Coors Field — the most hitter-friendly park in baseball — than away.
Today Washington Nationals manager Dusty Baker named Blake Treinen as his closer. Treinen has saved exactly one big league game.
There wasn’t necessarily an obvious choice, however. Last year Washington had Mark Melancon, but with him gone and GM Mike Rizzo’s failure to land a high-profile closer in the offseason, it became a contest between Treinen Shawn Kelley and Koda Glover.
Treinen posted a 2.28 ERA with 31 walks and 63 Ks in 67 innings in 2016. His big improvement last year came against lefties, who had tattooed him in the past. He pitched well this spring as well, but that doesn’t necessarily mean anything.
The Nats are our favorites to win the NL East, but we do have some questions about the pen. Blake Treinen will take the first crack at answering them.