Clayton Kershaw gave up three runs (one earned) and struck out nine over… (Harry How / Getty Images )
They don’t judge victories by brush strokes. There’s no extra credit given if they’re a thing of beauty, no demerits if unsightly.
All the Dodgers knew Sunday evening was, they won. And if their runs came via walks and errors and groundouts and gifts from the baseball gods, they still came.
They came enough for the Dodgers to beat the Mets, 8-3, and snap their seven-game losing streak, and if it goes down as their ugliest victory of the season, it goes down as a victory.
The Dodgers had lost 11 of the last 12 games and had not so much as led a game for 66 consecutive innings when they finally took the lead in the sixth inning.
That the victory included three errors and five walks from the Mets mattered not to the Dodgers.
A sold-out Dodger Stadium crowd of 55,359 saw the Mets take an initial lead against Clayton Kershaw (6-4) in the first on a walk, infield hit and run-scoring single by Scott Hairston.
But an early indication that Sunday might prove different came in the bottom of the inning when A.J. Ellis doubled off Dillon Gee (5-7) and Juan Rivera doubled him home to tie it. That ended a streak of 23 consecutive scoreless innings by the Dodgers.
The Mets scored two unearned runs in the second on a pair of throwing errors by shortstop Dee Gordon, but the Dodgers got the runs back in the fifth on a two-run rally that consisted of a walk, an error, a sacrifice bunt, another error and a sacrifice fly. Or just about everything but a hit.
The game was still tied, 3-3, in the bottom of the sixth after Rivera walked and Adam Kennedy hit a ground-rule double to send him to third. James Loney grounded out to second, but it was good enough to score Rivera with the go-ahead run.
The Dodgers put the game away with four runs in the seventh, two that were actually earned. This rally consisted of a single and two walks that loaded the bases, before catcher Mike Nickeas dropped a throw home to allow two runs to score.
A Kennedy sacrifice fly scored one more and Loney snapped a 0-for-28 skid with an RBI double.
Victory was at hand, and warts and all, to the Dodgers it was a thing of beauty.
Kershaw went seven innings, giving up three runs (one earned) on five hits and three walks, while striking out nine.
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