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All-Star Kershaw beats Mets to end Dodgers' seven-game skid

The SportsXchange

LOS ANGELES -- Clayton Kershaw found out before Sunday's game that he had been selected to the National League All-Star team for the second consecutive season.

On Sunday night, the Los Angeles Dodgers ace showed why in an 8-3 victory over the New York Mets at Dodger Stadium.

The win snapped a season-high, seven-game losing streak for the Dodgers, who remain one game behind the San Francisco Giants in the National League West.

Kershaw (6-4) overcame poor control and poor defense early to last seven innings, allowing three runs (one earned) and three walks. He struck out nine. Kershaw retired the final nine batters he faced, including five by strikeout.

"I don't care what Clayton's record is. I'll take him any day of the week against anybody," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "If this guy isn't the best pitcher in baseball, he's right there."

Kershaw lowered his ERA to a team-leading 2.65. However, prior to Sunday, he was winless since June 9 despite allowing just seven earned runs over his last three starts.

"It feels good to win," Kershaw said, "but wins and losses for a starting pitcher, you can't really control your individual record."

The Dodgers took their first lead in 67 innings in the sixth inning when Juan Rivera walked, advanced to third on a double by Adam Kennedy, and scored on a groundout by James Loney to move ahead 4-3. It was the first lead for the Dodgers since June 24 in Anaheim against the Los Angeles Angels, a span of seven games.

Mets starter Dillon Gee (5-7) allowed four runs (two earned) over six innings. Gee struck out four and walked two.

Two Mets errors led to four unearned runs for the Dodgers in the seventh inning to break the game open, highlighted by an RBI double by Loney that snapped a personal 0-for-28 skid.

The Mets committed three errors in the game, and Dodgers shortstop Dee Gordon had two errors, with the five miscues leading to eight of the 11 runs being unearned.

"Dillon pitched fine, but we didn't help him," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "We didn't run the bases well early, and we didn't catch the ball."

Ruben Tejada walked with one out in the first inning before singles by David Wright and Scott Hairston brought Tejada home with the game's first run.

The Mets might have scored more than their one run off Kershaw in the opening frame, as the first four batters reached base, but a pair of outs on the bases limited their rally. Kershaw picked off Andres Torres, who walked, and Hairston was thrown out trying to advance to second base on his RBI single.

A pair of doubles in the bottom of the first, by A.J. Ellis and Rivera, evened the score at 1-1, and also snapped a dubious streak. The Dodgers had not scored in 23 consecutive innings before their first-inning tally.

Gordon's throwing errors led to two unearned runs for the Mets in the third inning. Gordon leads all National League shortstops with 17 errors, but Gordon atoned for his mistakes with two hits and tied his career high with three stolen bases.

"I told myself, 'Dee, you've got to do better. You better get it back,'" Gordon said.

The Dodgers answered with a pair of unearned runs of their own in the fifth inning, as the inning was extended by bobbles from second baseman Ronny Cedeno and first baseman Justin Turner. Ellis hit a sacrifice fly to right center field to tie the score at 3-3.

NOTES: Kershaw is the first Dodgers pitcher to be chosen an All-Star in back-to-back years since Brad Penny in 2006-07. ... The eight runs scored by the Dodgers matched their total scored in their previous eight games, which included seven losses. They were shut out five times in that span. ... Dodgers right fielder Andre Ethier withdrew from the Home Run Derby at Kauffman Stadium on July 9 due to his strained left oblique that has kept him out of the last four games. "It's fun to go out there and it's an honor, but when it all comes down to it, just going out and winning games is my motivation," Ethier said. ... Wright was named to the National League All-Star team for the sixth time in his career. Teammate R.A. Dickey, 37, was selected as an All-Star for the first time in his career ... Dodgers relief pitcher Blake Hawksworth has been shut down with shoulder soreness after two minor league rehab appearances. Hawksworth, who has yet to pitch for the Dodgers this season, will not do anything for the next two weeks.
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