DENVER (AP) — Don Mattingly made a rather bold prediction after Clayton Kershaw's latest masterful performance: His ace will give up another run at some point this season.
"I know I'm going out on a limb," the Los Angeles Dodgers manager joked.
Lately, Kershaw has looked that untouchable.
The hard-throwing lefty nearly had no-hit stuff against Colorado again, allowing only two singles over eight innings as the Dodgers beat the Rockies 9-0 on Friday night.
What's more, Kershaw (10-2) extended his scoreless streak to 36 innings before being replaced by a pinch hitter in the ninth. Kershaw bottled up the top-hitting team in the majors in nearly matching the no-hitter he threw against the Rockies on June 18 at Dodger Stadium. Kershaw struck out eight and walked one.
"You don't ever want to give up a run," Kershaw casually said. "I guess that's the goal."
The nastiness of Kershaw's slider — the best pitch in baseball, Drew Stubbs labeled it — is fueling his roll.
"Anytime he takes the mound, he's capable of the run he's been on," catcher A.J. Ellis said.
Yasiel Puig hit a two-run shot — his first homer since May 28 — and Scott Van Slyke added a three-run homer as the Dodgers had a season-high 19 hits.
Jair Jurrjens (0-1) struggled in his first big-league start in a year, lasting 4 2-3 innings and giving up eight runs.
After the game, Jurrjens was taken to a nearby hospital for tests after developing breathing issues. Though the problems dissipated, the Rockies had him taken to the hospital.
Kershaw was coming off quite a June in which he went 6-0 with a 0.82 ERA. He carried it over to July as he allowed only DJ LeMahieu's single in the third and Nolan Arenado's base hit in the seventh.
The 26-year-old Kershaw hasn't allowed a run since the third inning against Arizona on June 13. His scoreless innings streak is the third-longest in Los Angeles history, according to information from the Elias Sports Bureau provided by the Dodgers. The team — and major league — record is 59 straight by Orel Hershiser in 1988.
Of those 36 scoreless innings Kershaw has turned in, 17 have now been at Colorado's expense. The Rockies didn't have Troy Tulowitzki (tight groin) in the lineup Friday night.