Clayton Kershaw agrees with Dave Roberts that removing him from the perfect game was the right call
After manager Dave Roberts removed him off the mound in the middle of a perfect game bid, Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw stood by him.
Dave Roberts, the manager of the Dodgers, was again scolded for taking a pitcher out of a perfect game. Clayton Kershaw didn’t want to get in on the trouble.
Kershaw pitched seven perfect innings on Wednesday before being substituted by the manager to open the eighth inning. He’d thrown 80 pitches already and was meant to be on a pitch count.
According to David Vassegh of Dodger Talk, Kershaw hailed the trade as “the perfect decision.”
“I’ve thrown 75 pitches in a simulation game, as much as I’d like to do it.” According to Jon Weisman, Kershaw remarked, “I would have wanted to stay.” I knew my pitch count wouldn’t be 100, let alone 90, going in. Coming off a game like that is difficult, but as I’ve said, we’re here to win, and this is the best option.
In 2016, Roberts also saved Rich Hill from a perfect game.
Clayton Kershaw’s decision to yank Clayton Kershaw from a perfect game was backed by Clayton Kershaw himself
There’s a good amount of push and pull going on here.
Kershaw, without a doubt, would have relished the opportunity to pitch a perfect game. It would have been a pity to miss out on such a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
At the same time, Roberts’ duty does not entail ensuring that his players receive individual honors. It’s about winning games, making the playoffs, and winning the World Series. A manager must be able to remove emotion from the situation.
Wouldn’t it have been wonderful if Kershaw had pitched a perfect game? Absolutely. Could chasing that moment put the pitcher at greater risk of injury, potentially jeopardizing the Dodgers’ season? Yes.
Kershaw’s injury history had to be considered, as he missed the postseason in 2021 due to an elbow injury and hasn’t started more than 30 games in a season since 2015.
Roberts arrived at this conclusion. Kershaw appears to be aware of this, whether or not he agrees in his heart.
In relief, Alex Vesia gave up a single to the second batter he saw, but the Dodgers still won, 7-0.