A scoreless battle for the first seven innings by Clayton Kershaw and Reid Detmers helped the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Los Angeles Angels 2–0 in their opening Tuesday Night Motorway Series on June 20 in ANAHEIM, CA. The win came despite Miguel Rojas doubling and scoring on Michael Busch’s high-bouncing single in the eighth.
Kershaw (9-4) continued his impressive play at Angell Stadium, where he has now gone 22 scoreless innings. Even though he gave up five hits, the 35-year-old left-handed pitcher handled difficult situations well, striking out five batters and avoiding any potential threats.
Will Smith’s RBI single and two lucky breaks in the eighth inning ended the Dodgers’ three-game losing streak.
The Angels did not get a run as a video review reversed a call, and Miguel Rojas scored as Michael Busch’s ground ball took a high bounce and bounced past the new Angels’ first baseman.
“Sometimes you need that lucky bounce” Kershaw said, and “tonight it was in our favour, along with the overturned call in the fourth inning.”
Caleb Ferguson struck out Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout in the eighth inning, and Evan Phillips saved the game in the ninth with his eighth save.
Even though Hunter Renfro hit two doubles, the Angels lost for only the fourth time in their last 15 games and were eliminated for only the second time this season. In this rivalry series, the Angels have now lost seven games in a row to the Dodgers.
Shohei Ohtani’s amazing 15-game hitting streak came to an end when he went 0-for-4, including two flyouts with an exit speed of 102 mph. Mike Trout also went 0-for-4 on the night.
There were a lot of people at Angel Stadium to see the crosstown foes play. Even though the Angels began the Highway Series with a better record than the Dodgers for the first time since 2014, the Dodgers held their lead.
Reed Detmers led the Angels to another stellar start. He allowed only two hits and struck out eight batters. He struck out Mookie Betts three times, which was Betts’ first game since April 15 with three strikeouts.
Clayton Kershaw got off to a good start by striking out the first eight Angels. However, in the fourth inning, he had two consecutive hits. Brandon Drury was first called safe as he tried to score, but after a lengthy review, the call was overturned. Kershaw said that Detmers threw better than he did, acknowledging that Detmers did a great job.
“I don’t see a better competitor than Clayton Kershaw.” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said of Kershaw, “He’s the only player left in our Opening Day lineup, and it takes skill to tackle him without putting him under too much pressure.
Drury and Renfro both drew bases to begin the seventh inning, putting the Angels within striking distance of another run. When Andrew Velazquez grounded into a double play, Kershaw was able to avoid a jam with the bases loaded.
Kershaw demonstrated his skill and composure, surviving another bases-loaded jam in the seventh inning by inducing a crucial ground ball double play and helping the Dodgers defeat the Angels, 2–0. Stay tuned for what will happen in the final on June 21.