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Clayton Kershaw throws no-hitter: "I'm am so amazed"

By Joe Resnick

Associated Press

Published: Thursday, June 19 2014 8:56 a.m. MDT

Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw, left, celebrates his no hitter with his teammates against the Colorado Rockies after a baseball game in Los Angeles, Wednesday, June 18, 2014.

Chris Carlson, Associated Press

LOS ANGELES — A pair of Cy Young Awards, three straight major league ERA titles, a 20-win season — and now a no-hitter.

There isn't much more for Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw to accomplish besides winning a World Series ring.

Kershaw dominated the Colorado Rockies on Wednesday night, striking out a career-high 15 and allowing his only baserunner on a throwing error by shortstop Hanley Ramirez in Los Angeles' 8-0 victory.

Kershaw's gem gave the Dodgers both no-hitters in the majors this season. Josh Beckett tossed one May 25 in Philadelphia.

"I am so amazed," Kershaw said. "Beckett told me he was going to teach me how to do that, so I have Josh to thank."

Cheered on by his wife in the stands, Kershaw (7-2) retired his first 18 batters before Corey Dickerson led off the seventh with a slow bouncer to Ramirez. His throw on the run went wide past first baseman Adrian Gonzalez for a two-base error — ending any chance for a perfect game.

But that was it for the Rockies against the 26-year-old Kershaw, who shrugged off the miscue and came oh-so-close to pitching the 22nd perfecto in the majors since 1900.

"He had command of everything. I told him between innings: 'It's not fair when you have a devastating slider and a devastating curveball in the same night," Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis said. "And when he does that, nights like this are really possible."

One batter after Dickerson reached base, rookie third baseman Miguel Rojas backhanded Troy Tulowitzki's grounder behind the bag and let fly with a strong throw to first that Gonzalez — a three-time Gold Glove winner — scooped out of the dirt to keep the no-hitter intact.

And with the crowd of 46,069 on its feet and roaring, Kershaw made quick work of the Rockies in the ninth.

DJ LeMahieu grounded out to first base on the first pitch and Charlie Culberson hit a lazy fly to right field on the next one. Dickerson then saw four straight strikes and went down swinging.

The only pitcher to have more strikeouts in a no-hitter was Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan, according to STATS.

"I've seen some great pitching performances, but it's tough to be any better than Kershaw," Colorado manager Walt Weiss said.

After his 107th and final pitch, a beaming Kershaw raised his arms above his head and waited for a huge hug from Ellis.

"I started tearing up out there in the ninth inning, just sitting out there catching and watching him throw after he got those first two outs," Ellis said. "It was pretty special."

"It's something you never forget," he added. "It's a game I'll watch on replays with my kids forever."

Moments later, as he was about to be interviewed on the field, Kershaw was doused by teammates with two large buckets. The left-hander with the big-breaking curve also got a big hug from his wife.

Kershaw, who signed a $215 million, seven-year contract in the offseason — a record for a pitcher — gave Los Angeles sports fans their second memorable thrill in just a few days.

The Kings won the Stanley Cup at home last Friday night, their second NHL championship in three years, and brought the famous trophy to Dodger Stadium on Tuesday for a pregame ceremony.

The next night, Kershaw took over.

The only other time the Dodgers pitched two no-hitters in one season was 1956, when the team was still in Brooklyn. Carl Erskine and Sal Maglie turned the trick that year.

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