So far the title of my story can only be a question and a big one, not a statement. Mark Saxson over at ESPN’s Dodger Report wrote a great article today on how Clayton Kershaw is looking to reverse his “playoff mojo” vs. the Cardinals. The biggest stat that stood out to me from his article was that Kershaw is 1-3 with a 4.23 ERA in nine postseason games. Worse yet if you factor out the other games Kershaw has a 7.65 era against the Cardinals in the postseason. Not the greatest numbers for a pitcher who is arguably the best pitcher in the MLB right now and probably one of the best to have played the game. While talking baseball with a friend the topic of Kershaw came up and my friend put it best.
Kershaw is “Awesome” in the regular season but chokes come playoffs.
Many share that same opinion and so I ask how important is this postseason performance for Kershaw? You could dismiss his postseason numbers all together for 2008 and 2009 due to inexperience and being young. Heck, you could then call his performance in the 2013 NLCS a fluke after all he pitched brilliantly against the Braves. So the way I see it this is possibly the biggest postseason of his career, the one that could define his legacy for years to come. Will Kershaw go down as one of the greatest regular season pitchers or one of the greatest all time pitchers to play the game?
Either way the 2014 NLDS series against the Cardinals will be entertaining!