Clayton Kershaw K’s 10 as Los Angeles Dodgers clinch first-round bye, home-field advantage in NLDS

LOS ANGELES — Clayton Kershaw struck out 10, Chris Taylor blasted a three-run homer in which the Dodgers efficiently challenged a fan interference name, and Los Angeles defeated the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-2 on Monday night time to clinch a first-round bye and home-field advantage in the National League Division Series.

The Dodgers at the moment are 102-44 (.699) this season. The 58 video games over .500 is their most in franchise historical past. They must go 14-2 or higher over their last 16 video games to tie the MLB file for wins in a season (116 wins, shared by the 1906 Chicago Cubs and 2001 Seattle Mariners).

Kershaw struck out 10 six days after beating the D-backs 4-0 on the street.

“It’s not a simple factor to do,” he stated of going through the identical workforce in back-to-back begins. “You do not wish to overthink an excessive amount of. There’s solely so many issues I can do. I haven’t got too many tips up my sleeve. Try to combine it up as finest as I can.”

The Dodgers have crushed the D-backs in 19 of their previous 20 conferences at Dodger Stadium. They improved to 12-3 towards Arizona this season.

Kershaw (9-3) allowed one run and 6 hits in six innings to earn his second straight win after a loss and 4 no-decisions relationship to July 24. His strikeouts tied for his second many of the season. The left-hander struck out the facet in the third.

It was Kershaw’s twenty seventh profession sport with at the very least 10 strikeouts and no walks, tying Curt Schilling for the third most all time. Only Randy Johnson (36) and Max Scherzer (29) have extra.

Closer Craig Kimbrel pitched the ninth and gave up a leadoff single after which hit two straight batters to load the bases. Gavin Lux made a diving stab on pinch-hitter Sergio Alcantara, who grounded right into a double play, earlier than Daulton Varsho popped as much as finish it.

On an evening when the Dodgers’ energy trio of Mookie Betts, Trea Turner and Freddie Freeman went a mixed 1-for-11 with a stroll and two strikeouts, the decrease half of the order produced.

Taylor had the most important blow.

“It’s good to get an enormous hit there and are available via with guys in scoring place,” he stated. “Once you begin hitting the ball laborious, it type of relaxes you a little bit bit.”

Taylor has struggled mightily this season. He struck out 149 occasions in 365 at-bats coming into the sport, with simply 24% of his swings being put into play. He flied out in the second earlier than connecting for his tenth homer off Merrill Kelly (12-7) in a four-run fourth. However, he needed to look ahead to it.

Crew chief James Hoye dominated fan interference when a person in the decrease left-field seats carrying a Dodgers jersey made a slipshod try at catching the ball in his glove. The ball struck the person in the stomach, and it ricocheted again onto the sector.

The Dodgers challenged the decision and after a video assessment, Taylor got here trotting residence with a three-run shot that prolonged their result in 5-0.

“When I noticed the replay, I believed it was a homer as a result of it seemed prefer it hit the man in the chest, so I feel it could have hit the highest of the wall and bounced over, however I wasn’t certain,” he stated. “I believed it’d nonetheless stand simply the way in which replay has gone this 12 months. You by no means know.”

Lux had three hits from the No. 7 spots.

Joey Gallo drove in the Dodgers’ first two runs. He hit a 437-foot homer to the right-field pavilion with two outs in the second. Gallo had an RBI single in the fourth in which Max Muncy scored on a fielding error by middle fielder Varsho.

The Dodgers thought they’d executed an inning-ending double play in the fifth. Instead, the video assessment went towards them. Geraldo Perdomo grounded right into a fielder’s alternative to 3rd that scored Carson Kelly, who doubled main off, and Arizona trailed 5-1.

(*10*) Walker scored on Alcantara’s double-play grounder for Arizona’s different run.

Merrill Kelly gave up 5 runs and eight hits in six innings. The right-hander struck out seven and walked two.

ESPN Stats & Information and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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