Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw allowed four runs in just one inning, the shortest start of his career, in a 7-1 loss to the Chicago Cubs in the first game of a doubleheader Tuesday in Chicago.
Kershaw was retired by manager Dave Roberts after throwing 39 pitches, allowing four hits and two walks while striking out two. According to ESPN Stats & Information, the previous shortest start to Kershaw’s career was 1⅓ innings, which also occurred on May 4 (in 2010).
Roberts told reporters after the game that there were no physical problems with Kershaw and that it was “an unusual outing.” Both said there has been no discussion about whether the left-handed pitcher will pitch on Saturday with a short break.
“It’s embarrassing,” Kershaw said. “There are no excuses. I was horrible. I put our team in a really bad situation … Make a really bad start and prepare for the next.”
According to ESPN Stats & Information, it was only the second time in Kershaw’s 361 career starts that he allowed four runs in the first inning. He allowed five runs in the first inning on August 28, 2008, against the Washington Nationals, during his rookie season.
“I would have liked to continue and try to be better,” Kershaw said. “But when you’re that bad, you really can’t stand up for too much.”
The three-time Cy Young Award winner saw his ERA rise from 2.09 to 2.95 when the Dodgers lost for the seventh time in nine games.
Kershaw gave a one-out double to Kris Bryant, and things fell apart for him from there. Anthony Rizzo followed up with an RBI single. Javier Báez walked and Matt Duffy singled to load the bases before David Bote drove a three-run double off the wall in left center to make it 4-0.
“Everything was wrong,” Kershaw said. “I’m not going to try to analyze it too much.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.