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This day in sports: Clayton Kershaw achieves strikeout milestone

Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw delivers a pitch against the St. Louis Cardinals in 2015.
(Luis Sinco/ Los Angeles Times)

The Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw joined Sandy Koufax and Tom Seaver on this date in 2015 when he became the third pitcher in modern baseball history to strike out 200 batters or more in at least six straight seasons.

In a 3-0 win against the Washington Nationals at Dodger Stadium, Kershaw pitched eight scoreless innings, gave up three hits and struck out eight batters that raised his major league-leading season total to 205.

Kershaw said he appreciated his latest entry into the history books because of what it represents. “I like consistency,” he said after the game.

Koufax’s 200-plus strikeout streak was from 1961 to 1966 and Seaver’s spanned from 1968 to 1976.

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In his first seven games since his son, Beckham Aaron Trout, was born, Angels center fielder Mike Trout has batted .367 with six home runs.

More memorable games and outstanding sports performances on Aug. 12:

1953 — Helicopter, a previously unheralded brown filly from Canada, clinched the Hambletonian Stakes when she won the trotting race’s second and third heats. Helicopter, ridden by Harry Harvey, took the lead in the third heat when Kimberly Kid went off-stride and Harvey was able to pass for the surprise victory at Meadowlands Racetrack in Goshen, N.Y.

1964 — Mickey Mantle of the New York Yankees set a major league record when he hit a home run from both sides of the plate for the 10th time in his career during a 7-3 win over the Chicago White Sox at Yankee Stadium. Mantle socked a left-handed home run off Ray Herbert that sailed over the 461-foot sign in center field and landed 15 rows into the bleachers, 502 feet from home plate.

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1966 — Art Shamsky of the Reds hit three home runs in a 14-11, 13-inning loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates at Crosley Field in Cincinnati. Two of Shamsky’s home runs came in the 10th and 11th innings after he had entered the game for defensive purposes in the eighth. In the bottom of the eighth, he hit a two-run clout off Al McBean that put the Reds ahead 8-7 and added a solo shot to tie the game 9-9 in the 10th off Elroy Face. Shamsky came back in the 11th inning with a two-run blast off Billy O’Dell to tie the game again at 11-11. The Pirates scored three runs in the top of the 13th and hung on for the victory.

1974 — Nolan Ryan of the Angels broke Bob Feller’s American League record of 18 strikeouts in a nine-inning game when he fanned 19 Boston Red Sox batters in a 4-2 victory at Anaheim Stadium. Ryan tied the major league record held by Steve Carlton and Tom Seaver, who both struck out 19 in 1969 and 1970, respectively.

1990 — Wayne Grady of Australia shed his image of being a runner-up when he beat Fred Couples by three strokes at the PGA Championship at Shoal Creek Country Club in Birmingham, Ala. For Grady, who had 29 second-place finishes, the win was his only major tournament victory . He led by two strokes after three rounds and his final-round 71 gave him a total of 282 to Couples’ 285.

2000 — Evander Holyfield scored a 12-round unanimous decision over John Ruiz in Las Vegas and won the vacant World Boxing Assn. heavyweight title. Outside of being staggered by a Holyfield punch in the third round, Ruiz effectively landed jabs throughout the fight and was never in danger of being stopped. Judges Duane Ford and Dave Moretti scored the bout close, 114-113, while judge Fernando Viso had it 116-112, making Holyfield the first boxer to be heavyweight champion four times.

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2001 — Wendy Ward set LPGA scoring records for a 54-hole tournament when she won the Wendy’s Championship for Children by three shots over Annika Sorenstam and Moira Dunn at the New Albany Country Club in Ohio. Ward’s 54-hole hole total of 21-under-par 195 was a tour record for a 54-hole tournament, both in relation to par and scoring total. With her lead down to two strokes in the final round, Ward smashed a five-wood onto the green on the par-5 No. 6 hole and made the birdie putt that swung the momentum back in her favor.

2007 — Tiger Woods won his fourth PGA Championship and his 13th major tournament when he beat Woody Austin by two strokes at Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Okla. Woods, who at one time led by five shots, saw his advantage dwindle to just one stroke when he bogeyed the 14th hole. But he birdied No. 15 and was even the rest of the way for a one-under-par 69 and a 272 total.

2012 — The U.S. men’s basketball team fought off a stirring challenge by Spain and pulled away in the final minutes for a 107-100 victory and its second straight Olympic championship at the Summer Games in London. The victory gave the Americans their 46th gold medal of the Games, the most ever by U.S. athletes in an Olympics in a foreign country. Kevin Durant scored 30 points for the U.S. and Pau Gasol led the Spaniards with 24 points.

Sources: The Times, Associated Press


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