Even Clayton Kershaw isn't immune to the pitchers' doom associated with Coors Field.
The reigning NL Cy Young winner will try to build on arguably his strongest outing of the season while also improving his track record in Colorado as the Los Angeles Dodgers try for a series win in Sunday's finale of a three-game set with the Rockies.
The Dodgers (32-31) could need an especially strong outing from Kershaw after Yasiel Puig (right hip flexor strain) and Dee Gordon (right hip discomfort) both left with injuries during Saturday's 5-4 loss in 10 innings. Both are considered day to day.
The left-hander's 5.24 ERA at Coors is higher than any other current park, yet he has a 5-3 record there, his second-highest win total in a visiting stadium. Kershaw has victories in his last two starts there, despite allowing five runs and 11 hits in five innings on his last visit Sept. 2.
"The great ones don't worry about the past," Dodgers pitching coach Rick Honeycutt said. "They just know what they've got to do going forward."
Kershaw (4-2, 3.32 ERA) was much better in Monday's 5-2 home win over the Chicago White Sox, surrendering two runs and four hits while striking out nine and walking none in eight innings. He has 27 strikeouts over his last three starts.
The Rockies (29-32) will counter with Jorge De La Rosa.
De La Rosa (6-4, 3.68) lost for the first time in eight starts in Tuesday's 4-2 home defeat to Arizona, allowing three runs and seven hits in seven innings. After a rough start to the season, he's become someone the Rockies can again rely on with a 6-1 record and 2.11 ERA in eight starts, including a suspended game.
The left-hander held the Dodgers to a run and four hits in seven innings of a 6-1 victory April 27 in Los Angeles, but he's largely struggled against them with a 3-8 record and 5.37 ERA in 13 starts. At home it's even worse with a 2-4 mark and 7.52 ERA.
Adrian Gonzalez is 13 for 34 with three home runs and 10 RBIs against De La Rosa, while Matt Kemp is 11 for 29 with three homers and eight RBIs.
After ending their eight-game losing streak Saturday, Colorado will try to win back-to-back games for the first time since May 18-20. Prior to Saturday's 16-hit effort, they'd hit .241 over a 5-16 stretch since May 11 after opening the season with a .305 mark through 39 games.
Troy Tulowitzki turned in his fifth straight multihit game, going 2 for 5, but his home average for the season actually dropped to .500.
Justin Morneau gathered two hits after going 1 for 23 in his previous six games.
"One of the hardest things to do when you're hitting the ball hard and not getting results is to not think you can change things," Morneau told the team's official website. "If you're still hitting the ball hard, still feel you're having good at-bats, you stick with the plan. You can get yourself into more trouble once you start trying to change things."
The Rockies have also been short-handed. While Carlos Gonzalez is on the disabled list, Wilin Rosario was a late scratch from Saturday's lineup and Michael Cuddyer missed a second game and remains day to day because of a sore left shoulder.
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