Clayton Kershaw was magnificent on Monday night, firing a two-hit shutout to beat the Tigers 4-0 at Dodger Stadium. It was the third career shutout for Kershaw, and second in his last five starts. "We could have played another three or four innings and we weren’t going to hit that guy," Tigers' manager Jim Leyland told MLive.com. "Not tonight. He was tremendous."â†µ
Years ago Bill James created a fun stat called Game Score, a way to roughly measure how good a pitchers' start was. As you can imagine, shutouts tend to score well, especially ones with three baserunners and 11 strikeouts. Kershaw's game score of 93 last night tied him with James Shields for the second-highest Game Score this season, behind a 94 put up by Justin Verlander last week. Kershaw's last shutout, on May 29 against Florida, tied for the fourth-highest Game Score this season, at 92.â†µ
Since the Dodgers moved to Los Angeles in 1958, there have been 26 starts with a Game Score of 93 or better, the last one a 95 by Chan Ho Park (a 13-strikeout shutout) in 2000. Sandy Koufax tops the list with a 101 in his perfect game against the Cubs in 1965. In fact, according to Buster Olney at ESPN, before Kershaw last night, the last Dodger to finish a shutout by striking out the side was Koufax in that 1965 perfect game. Great company indeed.â†µ
For more news on Clayton Kershaw and the Dodgers, be sure to read the SB Nation blog True Blue LA.