LOS ANGELES—With two Cy Young pitchers on the mound, who would have expected Sunday afternoons outcome to come into fruition. Clayton Kershaw and Jon Lester faced off and the two all-star pitchers gave up a combined 10 runs and 18 hits, including seven home runs, in seven and two-thirds innings between them. Cubs manager Joe Maddon couldn’t believe it.
“It sounds like fiction to me, but it happened,” Maddon said. “I have not seen [Kershaw] like that. We were on him. It’s just one of those days. Both of them are very good, they’re outstanding and neither one had a good day and [the Dodgers] got us.”
Kershaw undoubtedly had his worst game of the season, and also the shortest, lasting only four and one-third innings. He gave up a season high tying four runs off of a career high tying 11 hits. Luckily, the all star was able to take solace in the fact that his team still managed to win.
“They battled me well,” Kershaw said. “Gave up a lot of hits, but our team was better today. Silver lining that we got the sweep. I’ll think about all that other bad stuff tomorrow.”
Something good that Kershaw can think about tomorrow is rookie Cody Bellinger’s stellar play. After the Cubs’ Wilson Contreras hit a second inning solo shot, the 21-year-old belted a three run homer in the second inning; his club leading tenth of the season. He became the fastest player to reach 10 home runs in club history, doing so in only 31 games.
Bellinger’s home run seemed to set off a home run derby of sorts as the Dodgers continued to hit three more, including Kike Hernandez’s three run shot in the third, and Austin Barnes’ and Yasiel Puigs’ solo homers in the fifth and seventh innings.
“You hit those stretches sometimes when you’re just hitting home runs, and that’s the way you’re scoring,” said Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant. “Hopefully, next time that happens we take advantage of it.”
The Dodgers were able to take advantage of it on Sunday, completing a series sweep in which they outscored the Cubs 18-4. They have now won 9 out of their last 11 games. The Dodgers will look to continue their hot streak Monday when Rich Hill (1-2, 4.76 ERA) takes the mound in St. Louis to open up a four game stand.