That probably wasn’t real fair. The Dodgers are on their first actual hot streak of the season and then send Clayton Kershaw to the mound.
The results were somewhat predictable, even if Atlanta starter Julio Teheran pitched nearly as well as Kershaw.
But these days you have to be on the absolute top of your game if you expect to beat Kershaw, who pitched the Dodgers to 2-1 victory over the Braves before a Dodger Stadium crowd of 51,163 for a three-game sweep.
The victory was the Dodgers' sixth straight and increased their lead in the National League West over the idle Giants to 3 1/2 games.
The Dodgers scored solo runs in the first and third, and then turned it over to their ace, who as usual, delivered.
Kershaw allowed nine hits -- which was four more than the Dodgers managed against Teheran -- and continued his remarkable control. He did not walk a batter and has not walked more than one in any of his last five starts.
Kershaw (13-2) was supported by three double plays, so even when a Brave did get on, often it wasn’t for long. He struck out nine and lowered his earned-run average to 1.71.
The left-hander has now won 10 consecutive decisions, posting a 0.84 in his last 11 starts. Otherwise, everything’s been a real struggle.
Kershaw was one out away from his second consecutive shutout when the Braves scored in the ninth.
The Dodgers didn't do much with Teheran, but with Kershaw pitching as if he wants another Cy Young, it was enough.
Yasiel Puig scored both runs for the Dodgers.
He walked in the first and scored on an Adrian Gonzalez double. Gonzalez leads the Dodgers with 71 RBI.
In the third inning, Puig did the scoring himself, sending a solo home run out to left. It was his 13th home run of the season.
Other than that, the Dodgers couldn’t get anything going against Teheran (10-7). The right-hander threw a complete game and allowed only two more hits after Puig’s homer. He walked three and struck out nine.
The Braves finally squeezed out a run against Kershaw in the ninth, when a pair of singles had runners at the corners with one out. He struck out Freddie Freeman on a full count and then Justin Upton sent a little roller to Juan Uribe at third.
Uribe charged the ball, gloved it and then threw on the run. Upton just beat the throw as the run scored. The Dodgers challenged the call -- it was an extremely close play -- but upon review the it was upheld.
Kershaw then got Evan Gattis on a groundout to wrap up his second consecutive complete game.