Kershaw, Dodgers blank Braves for 2-0 NLDS lead

Clayton Kershaw earned the right to start Game 1 for the Dodgers

The Braves have their best arm on the mound in a favorable matchup against Hyun-Jin Ryu, so Folty better get back on track if Atlanta wants a chance at stealing Game 1 in LA. "I think I have done a better job this year, but they were just patient tonight".

Ryu joined exclusive company in the Dodgers' franchise history by tossing his second postseason start with at least seven shutout innings. He won't rest on his laurels for this one start.

"Yeah, maybe", Kershaw said behind a smile.

Atlanta have lost eight straight series openers in the playoffs and have not won a Game 1 since 2001. He can opt out of his contract after the World Series.

Whereas Game 1 was televised on MLB Network last night, Game 2 is being televised on Fox Sports 1 (FS1) cable TV. "But after talking to him and explaining our thoughts, he accepted it and he just said he'll be ready to go for the second game".

Atlanta though has continued a late-season offensive slump as this was the third time in the past six games they have been shut out. His last start came in game 163 on Monday, when he tossed 6.2 scoreless innings and struck out three.

"It doesn't have to all fall on his shoulders like it has in the past", starter-turned-reliever Alex Wood said of Kershaw. We have more off days now during the season, so it kind of worked out that way. He was 5-3 with a 2.87 ERA in 10 starts for the Braves.

Machado rebounded from an 0-for-4, three-strikeout performance in Game 1 to give the Dodgers an early 2-0 lead with a first-inning home run.

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"This guy is a potential Hall of Fame player", Roberts said.

And even though Kershaw is less overpowering than he has been in the past, with a strikeout total lower than his innings pitched for the first time since 2013, he has been a handful when getting an extra day of rest like he will have Friday.

The South Korean was 7-3 with a 1.97 ERA in the regular season.

The 31-year-old Ryu missed 3 1/2 months of the season with a groin strain and returned August 15 to post a 1.88 ERA in 52 2/3 innings. Kershaw also injured this season, had a 3.89 ERA in September.

"I think they were jacked up and excited, and it's a big moment to this point in their career, Folty included".

"You know, that is something we do special is being real tough outs one through nine (in the batting order)", Pederson said. The Braves are 13-11 in Sanchez's starts this year.

Under manager Brian Snitker, the Braves went from 72 wins in 2017 to 90 and the NL East title this year, surprising many with the quick turnaround. "For me, one of the best outings that I've seen that I can recall, in the sense that he used his complete repertoire of pitches". It's no doubt how good Kershaw is and what he's been doing for his whole career.

Led by so-called "Baby Braves" - 20-year-old left fielder Ronald Acuna Jr. and 21-year-old second baseman Ozzie Albies - Atlanta has gotten production from veterans Nick Markakis and Freddie Freeman as well. The Braves' offense had six hits to the Dodgers' five.

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