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LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Carl Crawford connected on the first Brewer pitch of the game for his third home run of the season, and hit his fourth homer in the fifth inning, as Clayton Kershaw gave up no runs and fanned 12 over eight innings to give the Dodgers their second series in a row, 2-0.
On a day that marked the 28th anniversary of Fernando Valenzuela establishing a major league record with his 41st consecutive scoreless inning, Carl Crawford hit the eighth leadoff homer of his career to left field off Brewers starter Kyle Lohse.
Crawford later sent one into the stands in right field to give the Dodgers a 2-0 that remained as the final score of the game.
Crawford, who came into the game batting .077 against Lohse, went 0-for-5 on Saturday, has now recorded a multi-hit game in 10 of his 21 starts.
Clayton Kershaw showed his Cy Young form as he scattered four hits over 8 innings of work, and struck out 12 Brewers without giving up a walk, earning his third win of the season in a matchup of top-5 National League pitchers.
“We ran into some good pitching,” Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said. “This guy today, I wouldn’t want any part of him. When he’s on, you’re going to struggle to score. When he’s commanding the fastball inside, you’re in big trouble because there’s not much you can do with the pitch. And he knows when to throw the off-speed stuff away, so you can’t cover all of the plate.”
It was the first time a Dodgers starter recorded a win in nearly two weeks, and has now allowed three or fewer earned runs in 18 consecutive starts, the longest amongst active starters and the longest streak of his career.
Nick Punto, who took over at second base for the hot-hitting Mark Ellis, went 3-for-4, but did not score a run as he, Crawford, and Juan Uribe were the only dodgers to get hits in the game.
The only chances the Brewers really had were in the first two innings. In the first inning, Kershaw escaped a jam after Jean Segura and Ryan Braun singled, and Jonathan Lucroy grounded into a double play.
Rickie Weeks led off the top of the second inning with a double after Matt Kemp was unable to get to the ball in shallow centerfield.
Then Kershaw went to work.
The 2011 Cy Young winner retired the next 18 batters and finished the day having lowered his ERA to 1.73.
Brandon League came in and retired the Brewers in order to record his eighth save.
With Sunday’s win, the Dodgers prevented the Brewers from becoming just the fifth team since 1969 to have a winning record in April after starting the season at 2-8 or worse.
The win also marked the second time of the young season that the Dodgers have won consecutive series, after sweeping the Pirates and taking two out of three from the Padres in San Diego.
The Dodgers will host the Rockies on Monday, who share the division lead with the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Ted Lilly is slated to get his second start of the season, after he impressed, giving up a single run and earned seven strikeouts in five innings of work, last week against the Mets.
The Rockies have just two wins in their last eight games after having started the season 13-4.
The Dodgers have struggled to provide their starters with much run support this season, and with six hits spread throughout three players, today was no exception. But if Clayton Kershaw has shown Dodger fans anything, its that he has what it takes to provide for himself whatever it takes to win, one way or another.