Kershaw helps Dodgers blank Cubs 1-0 in NLCS Game 2


In this picture taken with a slow shutter speed, Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw (22) throws during the fourth inning of Game 2 of the National League baseball championship series against the Chicago Cubs, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)


Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw (22) looks up before a pitch during the fourth inning of Game 2 of the National League baseball championship series against the Chicago Cubs, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)


Los Angeles Dodgers' Adrian Gonzalez (23) hits a home run during the second inning of Game 2 of the National League baseball championship series against the Chicago Cubs, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)


CHICAGO (AP) — Clayton Kershaw pitched seven sparkling innings, Adrian Gonzalez homered and the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the Chicago Cubs 1-0 on Sunday night to tie the NL Championship Series at a game apiece.

Kershaw retired his first 14 batters and allowed just two hits in first outing since he pitched three times in the NL Division Series, including a two-out save in Game 5 on Thursday night in Washington. He struck out six and walked one in the best playoff start of his illustrious career.

The Dodgers needed a clutch pitching performance after their heartbreaking 8-4 loss in the series opener, and their ace left-hander stepped up. Kenley Jansen then got six outs for his third save of the playoffs.

Game 3 is Tuesday night in Los Angeles, with Cubs right-hander Jake Arrieta facing Dodgers lefty Rich Hill.

In this picture taken with a slow shutter speed, Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw (22) throws during the fourth inning of Game 2 of the National League baseball championship series against the Chicago Cubs, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
http://wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/web1_113025144-70174062141d464f9d149d0faab50690.jpgIn this picture taken with a slow shutter speed, Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw (22) throws during the fourth inning of Game 2 of the National League baseball championship series against the Chicago Cubs, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw (22) looks up before a pitch during the fourth inning of Game 2 of the National League baseball championship series against the Chicago Cubs, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
http://wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/web1_113025144-c0966679f8f54687a42452aee46a6e9c.jpgLos Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw (22) looks up before a pitch during the fourth inning of Game 2 of the National League baseball championship series against the Chicago Cubs, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Los Angeles Dodgers’ Adrian Gonzalez (23) hits a home run during the second inning of Game 2 of the National League baseball championship series against the Chicago Cubs, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
http://wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/web1_113025144-6a4af96baf75487fa03b870b31724025.jpgLos Angeles Dodgers’ Adrian Gonzalez (23) hits a home run during the second inning of Game 2 of the National League baseball championship series against the Chicago Cubs, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
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