LOS ANGELES (AP) – The Colorado Rockies can still earn their first winning record against the Los Angeles Dodgers since 2007 if they win the last two games of their final series.
But the Rockies will have to get by two of the Dodgers’ best pitchers – Zack Greinke and Hyun-Jin Ryu – after managing four hits off Los Angeles ace Clayton Kershaw in an 11-0 loss on Friday night.
“He was sharp and looked really good,” Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. “His fastball was good, his breaking ball was I think one of the better breaking balls that he’s had against us this year.”
Michael Cuddyer went 0 of 4, dropping his league-leading average to .333. He owns a nine-point lead over Atlanta’s Chris Johnson in pursuit of his first career batting title.
Rookie Collin McHugh (0-3) gave up eight runs and nine hits in four innings, struck out three and walked one.
“I felt good in the bullpen and felt pretty good in the first inning, as good as I’ve felt in a number of outings this season,” he said. “I thought I made some good pitches, but they put good swings on them and you’ve got to live with the results.”
Kershaw (16-9) lowered his ERA to 1.83, becoming the first pitcher to lead the majors in ERA in three consecutive seasons since Atlanta’s Greg Maddux from 1993-95.
The left-hander joined Houston’s Roger Clemens (1.87) and Boston’s Pedro Martinez (1.74) as the only qualifying pitchers since 2000 to post an ERA under 2.00. Kershaw is the first Dodgers pitcher to do so since Sandy Koufax had a 1.73 ERA in 1966.
Kershaw struck out eight and walked none in totaling a career-high 236 innings this season. Favored to win the NL Cy Young Award, Kershaw leads the league with 232 strikeouts.
His next start for the NL West champions will come in the NL division series opener Thursday at Atlanta or St. Louis.
The Dodgers’ Juan Uribe went 3 for 4, and Mark Ellis went 3 for 5, with both driving in two runs.
Crawford’s three-run homer in the fourth scored Kershaw, who singled, and Yasiel Puig, who walked, for an 8-0 lead.
Adrian Gonzalez got his 100th RBI of the season with a solo shot in the third that extended the Dodgers’ lead to 5-0.
“The pitch to Gonzalez was a cutter in and it got a little too much of the plate,” McHugh said. “The pitch to Crawford was a fastball in and off the plate, but he got his barrel to it, so it was a big hit in a big situation.”
Los Angeles jumped on McHugh in the first, taking a 4-0 lead with two outs on a two-run double by Uribe and RBI singles by A.J. Ellis and Mark Ellis.
A.J. Ellis hit a two-run homer off reliever Jeff Manship in the fifth. Mark Ellis’s RBI single with two outs in the sixth made it 11-0.
NOTES: The Rockies are 8-9 against the Dodgers this season with two games left. … RHP Juan Nicasio (8-9) starts for Colorado on Saturday against RHP Zack Greinke (15-3). … The Rockies have yet to name a starter for Sunday’s season finale while the Dodgers will go with LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu.
– By BETH HARRIS, AP Sports Writer
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