Clayton Kershaw improved to 13-9, striking out 10 Rockies while holding… (Mark J. Terrill / Associated…)
Aware that the St. Louis Cardinals already were cruising to another win, the Dodgers took the field Friday knowing their slim playoff chances were ebbing even further.
But the Dodgers did their best to keep their postseason hopes alive with an 8-0 win over the Colorado Rockies, led by another stellar outing from starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw and home runs by Shane Victorino and Bobby Abreu.
That kept the Dodgers three games behind St. Louis for the second National League wild-card berth, the Dodgers' lone hope of reaching the playoffs.
But the Dodgers are running out of time; there are only five games left in the regular season. Earlier, the Cardinals crushed the Washington Nationals, 12-2.
Kershaw (13-9) was superb in his second start since being sidelined for 11 days with pain in his right hip.
The left-hander held Colorado scoreless on five hits while striking out 10 in his eight innings of work at Dodger Stadium, the third time this season he's struck out at least 10 batters in a game.
Kershaw got plenty of run support, starting in the second inning when the Dodgers jumped on Rockies starter Jeff Francis (5-7) with four runs.
Adrian Gonzales singled, Hanley Ramirez walked, Andre Ethier doubled home Gonzalez and Victorino hit his three-run home run.
In the fourth inning the Dodgers loaded the bases with no one out, and when Kershaw grounded into a double play, Ethier scored again to widen the Dodgers' lead to 5-0.
Ethier scored a third time in the eighth inning on A.J. Ellis' double, and Abreu then slugged a two-run, pinch-hit homer. It was the veteran Abreu's first career pinch-hit homer.
It was the third consecutive game that the Dodgers — whose pending inability to reach the postseason largely has reflected their inability to hit consistently — scored eight runs.
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