Clayton Kershaw carried a shutout into the seventh inning and Justin Turner provided early support with a two-run home run as the Los Angeles Dodgers extended their winning streak to eight games with a 9-2 interleague win over the host Houston Astros on Tuesday.
Kershaw (7-3) was masterful. He needed just 32 pitches to complete one trip through the Houston batting order and didn’t allow his first base runner until Kyle Tucker slapped a one-out double to right field in the fourth inning.
Kershaw recovered with a pair of ground-ball outs and retired eight of nine batters before entering the seventh with only 65 pitches on his ledger.
Alex Bregman ended Kershaw’s shutout bid by lofting an 0-1 curveball into the Crawford Boxes in left field to lead off the seventh inning. It was his sixth home run this season.
Kershaw allowed a two-out single to Carlos Correa later that inning but escaped with no further damage.
Kershaw went 7 2/3 innings, allowing one run and four hits with six strikeouts. He did not issue a walk. Kershaw threw 81 pitches with a near-even distribution of sliders and fastballs. The Dodgers have won his last four starts and 12 of their last 13 games overall.
Astros right-hander Zack Greinke (4-2) matched zeroes with Kershaw through three innings and needed only 29 pitches to retire the first nine Dodgers he faced.
But his four-pitch walk to Mookie Betts to lead off the fourth turned the tide, with Turner drilling a two-run homer into the home bullpen in right-center. It was Turner’s eighth homer of the season.
Greinke, who in the second inning became the 135th pitcher to reach 3,000 career innings, retired eight consecutive batters following the Turner blast.
However, Turner reached with a two-out single in the sixth; and, after consecutive walks to Max Muncy and Will Smith, Chris Taylor dumped a two-run single into shallow center field for a 4-0 lead.
The Dodgers drew three bases-loaded walks in the top of the eighth to extend the lead to 8-1.
Greinke allowed four runs on three hits and three walks, with five strikeouts over six innings. The Astros have dropped four consecutive games following a stretch of eight wins in nine games.
–Field Level Media