Clayton Kershaw pitched seven scoreless innings and was backed by home runs by Matt Kemp and James Loney as the Los Angeles Dodgers cruised to their third straight victory, a 5-1 win over the Houston Astros Saturday night at Minute Maid Park.
Kershaw (1-0) was magnificent on Saturday with nine strikeouts in his first win of the season. He allowed three hits and two walks, one intentional, and lowered his ERA on the season to just 1.61. Kershaw batted for himself in the top of the eighth inning but the Dodgers plated two more runs for a 5-0 lead and at 105 pitches Kershaw didn't go out to the mound to pitch the eighth inning.
Loney homered in the second inning, his first of the season, to give the Dodgers a 1-0 lead. The Houston native has four doubles and a home run in his last seven starts for the Dodgers.
Kemp followed with a towering home run to left center field in the sixth inning, a two-run shot that was his ninth of the season, tops in the major leagues. No Dodger has ever been faster to nine home runs than Kemp, who has done so in just 15 team games to date. Kemp on the season is hitting .474/.523/1.018.
Not to be forgotten, Andre Ethier delivered a two-run single in the eighth inning. That gave Ethier, who is hitting .293/.349/.621, 21 runs batted in on the season, which is second in the majors to Kemp, who has driven in 22 runs.
Chad Billingsley gets the call on Sunday afternoon as the Dodgers go for the sweep, facing Wandy Rodriguez for Houston.
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