Clayton Kershaw out to continue road magnificence against Giants

Neville E. Guard-USA TODAY Sports

When it comes to Clayton Kershaw, just call Oracle Park in San Francisco “Dodger Stadium North.”

The Dodgers’ left-hander has some of his loftiest numbers at Oracle Park, and he’ll face the Giants for the 57th time in his certain Hall of Fame career on Wednesday night in a matchup there.

This will be his 27th career regular-season start at Oracle — 29th overall appearance — and he is 14-6 there with a 1.60 ERA. Oracle is the site of his most wins, complete games and shutouts (four each), innings (186) and strikeouts (177) outside of Los Angeles.

For Kershaw (1-1, 3.75 ERA overall this season), perhaps his most impressive number in San Francisco is in home runs allowed. He’s given up just nine in 186 innings, the most recent having been to J.D. Davis in a 5-3 Dodgers win last August.

Thairo Estrada, Darin Ruf and David Villar — the latter two in Los Angeles — also homered against Kershaw last season, when he made four starts against the Giants, going 0-1 with a 4.42 ERA in 18 1/3 innings. He struck out 22 in those starts, including eight in eight innings in two San Francisco appearances.

Kershaw is 24-15 in his career against the Giants with a 2.01 ERA in 56 games, including 54 starts. He has more career wins against just one opponent, with 26 against the Colorado Rockies.

The 16-year veteran has made both of his starts this season against the Arizona Diamondbacks, limiting them to four hits and one run in a 10-1 home win on April 1 before allowing seven hits and four runs in a 6-3 road defeat six days later. Chase Field in Phoenix is the only ballpark where Kershaw has a sub-.500 record.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts has learned to just sit back and enjoy the show.

“It amazes me in one sense, but it’s not surprising given who he is,” Roberts said of Kershaw’s abilities at age 35. “He’s a testament to competing, (having) will, not taking a day for granted. That’s something that is going to be part of his legacy going forward.”

Kershaw will be go against a Giants team that hopes to have gathered some momentum from Tuesday’s 5-0 win over the Dodgers in the middle game of the three-game series that featured three-hit pitching and two home runs.

“It’s a good start,” noted Villar, who contributed a two-run homer to a three-run eighth inning. “It’s good to get that win that everyone contributes. Everyone is going to be very excited. It’s a good turning point for us.”

The Giants, who lost Monday’s series opener 9-1, are expected to counter Wednesday with Alex Cobb (0-1, 2.53), who went head-to-head with Kershaw twice last season, both times in Los Angeles.

Cobb didn’t get a decision in either game, allowing 15 hits and seven runs in 10 innings in games the Giants lost 7-4 on July 24 and 7-3 on Sept. 7

The 35-year-old is 0-1 with a 4.98 ERA in four career starts against the Dodgers.

Cobb is coming off a 3-1 loss to the Kansas City Royals last Friday, going seven innings and allowing just two runs.

–Field Level Media

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