Dodgers' Kershaw leaves start against Braves after 2 innings

LOS ANGELES (AP) Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw left his start against the Atlanta Braves after two innings on Sunday.

The All-Star left-hander was pitching to Tyler Flowers with two outs in the second when it appeared Kershaw might have pulled something on his left side. A trainer came out to the mound to check him. After tossing a couple of practice pitches, Kershaw resumed facing Flowers and walked him.

Kershaw struck out Matt Adams to end the inning and then retreated to the clubhouse. He struck out two and walked one on 21 pitches.

Kershaw was replaced by pinch-hitter Trayce Thompson when his turn to bat came up in the bottom of the inning. Right-hander Ross Stripling took the mound in the third.

Kershaw is 15-2 with a 2.07 ERA and had a 14-start unbeaten streak coming into the game.

He was sidelined for 2 + months last year with a herniated disk in his back. He didn't need surgery and returned to pitch the Dodgers into the NL Championship Series, where they lost to the eventual world champion Cubs.

However, Kershaw decided not to pitch for Team USA in this year's World Baseball Classic, saying he owed it to the Dodgers to remain healthy for an entire season.

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