Sportress of Blogitude

Clayton Kershaw pitches no-hitter, perfect game spoiled by Hanley Ramirez error (vids)

Even though Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw put up a sublime pitching performance marred only by an error by shortstop Hanley Ramirez in the 7th inning, Kershaw had to “settle” for a sparkling no-hitter instead of a perfect game in a 8-0 win over the Colorado Rockies.

Ramirez’s throwing error (above) on a play he probably should have made allowed Corey Dickerson to reach base, but Kershaw remained relentless, facing only one batter over the 27-up-27-down minimum to notch the 12th no-hitter in Dodgers franchise history, arguably one of the most dominant no-hitters ever pitched.

Kershaw needed only 107 pitches during his march into the record books, striking out 15 batters. Of the 13 balls put in play, nine were grounders. The remaining four at-bats where the ball was put in play, one didn’t get out of infield, meaning only three at-bats involved balls that reached an outfielder. Impressive.

The Dodgers lefty started to suspect something magical was going on as the game progressed.

“We just started scoring so many runs,” said Kershaw. “I just didn’t want to mess that up. I just kept trying to throw strikes. It was just so much fun, I can’t explain it. You don’t really think about doing something like that. You think about winning a World Series, but as far as individually, this ranks right up there. It’s pretty cool.”

Admitting he was “more nervous the usual” heading into the ninth inning, Kershaw retired the side in order, igniting a raucous celebration in the infield where Kershaw eventually was joined by his wife, Ellen.

The party then moved into the clubhouse, where Kershaw’s teammates discussed the magical evening and masterful pitching performance.

Kershaw had difficulty wrapping his brain around exactly what had just happened.

“I haven’t thought about the ramifications of this thing, but I don’t take for granted the history of this,” Kershaw said.