Oklahoma City - Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw dominated in his Major League Rehab Assignment Saturday night, but the Oklahoma City Dodgers' offense was shut out in the Omaha Storm Chasers' 4-0 win at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark.
Seven-time MLB All-Star and three-time Cy Young Award-winner Kershaw started for Oklahoma City in front of a sellout crowd of 13,106 as he continued his recovery from a late-July back strain.
Kershaw racked up eight strikeouts over 5.0 innings and did not issue a walk. He allowed one run and two hits, including a home run in the second inning and a single in the fourth inning.
Saturday's game was Kershaw's first since he exited the Los Angeles Dodgers' July 23 game against Atlanta after suffering a back strain. Prior to his injury, Kershaw compiled a 15-2 record and 2.04 ERA this season over 21 starts with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He recorded 168 strikeouts against 24 walks over 141.1 innings and held opponents to a .197 average.
The third-largest crowd in Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark's 20 seasons was on hand as Kershaw threw 64 pitches for Oklahoma City, including 43 for strikes, but was charged with the loss.
Oklahoma City's offense was held quiet by the Storm Chasers as the OKC Dodgers suffered their eighth shutout loss of the season.
Omaha starting pitcher Jake Kalish (1-0) and reliever Seth Maness held the Dodgers to five hits and two walks, while combining for nine strikeouts as the Storm Chasers evened the four-game series against the Dodgers, 1-1.
Kershaw retired the side in order in the first inning before Jorge Soler led off the second inning with a solo home run on a fly ball to left field that landed on the top of the Budweiser Deck.
Kershaw then retired 11 of the next 12 batters as he pitched through five innings. He allowed an infield single to Paulo Orlando with one out in the fourth inning, but Orlando was then picked off and caught stealing between first and second base for the second out of the inning.
Kershaw exited his first Triple-A game after five innings in front of Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark's largest crowd since April 18, 1998 when a crowd of 13,129 watched the Oklahoma City RedHawks face Edmonton.
Omaha added to its lead in the sixth inning. Terrance Gore hit a triple into right field with one out and scored on a sacrifice fly by Ramon Torres to bump the Storm Chasers' lead to 2-0.
Omaha (63-69) added two more runs in the eighth inning. Hunter Dozier led off with a double. He advanced to third base on a wild pitch by Dodgers pitcher Fabio Castillo and scored on a RBI single by Billy Burns.
Burns moved to third base on a single by Gore and scored on Torres' sacrifice fly for a 4-0 advantage.
Dodgers pitchers recorded 12 strikeouts Saturday, led by Kershaw's eight and combined with Castillo's three strikeouts and Dylan Floro's one strikeout. Oklahoma City has a PCL-leading 1,195 strikeouts overall this season - 50 strikeouts shy of their PCL modern-era record of 1,245 they set last season.
The Dodgers (68-63) now trail American Northern Division-leading Colorado Springs by 9.5 games in the standings with 10 games to play. Colorado Springs defeated New Orleans, 10-2, Saturday night, reducing Oklahoma City's elimination number to two.
The season series with Omaha concludes with a doubleheader Sunday starting at 3:35 p.m. at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark. The doubleheader will consist of two seven-inning games with the second game following approximately 30 minutes after the conclusion of the first game. Gates will open at 2:30 p.m. on a Chaparral Energy Family Sunday, featuring family friendly activities such as pregame player autographs and kids can run the bases after the game.
Live coverage of Sunday's games begins at 3:20 p.m. on AM 1340 "The Game," 1340thegame.com, or through the free iHeartRadio mobile app.
Tickets are available through the box office on South Mickey Mantle Drive, by calling (405) 218-1000, or by ordering through okcdodgers.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.