The Los Angeles Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw arrives for training at the Sydney Cricket ground in Sydney, Friday, March 21, 2014. Major League Baseball will open their season Saturday in Sydney with the Dodgers taking on the Arizona Diamondbacks.
The Los Angeles Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw arrives for training at the Sydney Cricket ground in Sydney, Friday, March 21, 2014. Major League Baseball will open their season Saturday in Sydney with the Dodgers taking on the Arizona Diamondbacks. AP Photo - Rick Rycroft

Kershaw's $215 million arm the best paid in baseball

LA Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw was almost portrayed as someone with superhuman qualities during his trip Down Under for the historic Major League Opening Series at the SCG, agaist Arizona.

Much of the questions he received were about his salary, with the $215 million Kershaw boasting the highest-paid arm in the game.

And, almost rightfully so.

That is because many Austraians just can't get their heads around how a sportsman could attract so much money - more than 150 NRL players across six different clubs combined, in fact.

But Kershaw did prove he was, to the surprise of many, human in the game he pitched on the weekend - his team's 3-1 win over the Diamondbacks on Saturday night.

The 26-year-old found himself in a jam, with runners on first and second during his first innings on the mound.

But then a Mark Trumbo groundout spared him blushes in front of the 38,000-strong crowd expecting nothing but success from him.

Kershaw then went on to dominate the D-backs batters, pitching 6.2 innings and giving up just five hits for one run, his team triumphing 3-1.

When asked whether he enjoyed the challenge of getting himself out of trouble in game one, Kershaw said he was happy just to dust off the Spring Training cobwebs.

"We don't enjoy it, but it felt good to get out of that inning and get the nerves behind me," he said.

"That first inning of the first game of the first season on Opening Day - it feels good to get that one under your belt without giving up a run."

Then when it came to taking Kershaw out of the game, he showed just how much of a fighter he is, and why he earns the big bucks.

"Clayton was really good for us tonight as always. He's a tough guy to take out of the game. He always wants to stay in," Dodgers coach Don Mattingly said.

Consistent Diamondbacks first baseman Paul Goldschmidt was one of the few batters to do well against Kershaw over the weekend.

Goldschmidt came up with four hits across both games, despite the coastal winds wreaking havoc and leading to just two homers scored in the series.

"He (Goldschmidt) hit it pretty good. The wind was blowing in though and Kershaw did a good job at keeping us in the middle of the diamond," Diamondbacks coach Kirk Gibson said.

"He threw a good ball game against us.

"But true to his form, Goldy made some good adjustments and belted some balls."


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