The Minotaur is unleashed upon the World

minotaur_illustration_medium

It is a small but cool club that knows about Clayton Kershaw and The Minotaur.  The club involved those who were with Dodger Thoughts circa 2007 when Clayton Kershaw was doing things that seemed mythical while in the minor leagues.

I may be missing some facts but I’m pretty sure that as we talked more and more about his deeds on Dodger Thoughts, I said I refused to believe in him until he was real. I had been burned too many times by the Greg Millers/Kiki Jones of the world. Nate responded that he was like the Minotaur, a mythical beast so great no one could believe he was real.

I can’t find the exact moment this happened but as Jon Weisman tweeted it was definitely in 2007 when we started using it.

And by this photo, you can tell he was also left handed.  The nickname stuck for us at Dodger Thoughts and when we migrated to TrueBlueLA, I brought it with me.

Eight years go this past spring, I wrote a brief ditty about Kershaw and his spring training debut.

Sometime today the Dodgers will be unleashing the Minotaur upon major league baseball. The prospect ghosts of Kiki Jones, Dan Opperman, and Greg Miller look on and hope the beast will feast upon the National League bats like they were never able to.

We all hoped for and expected good things for the Minotaur, but no one expected Clayton Kershaw to become the best pitcher of the 21st century. No one expected that he would match Sandy Koufax game for game, season for season, to make such a case that you might have to think a second before saying who was better.

Back in 2011 Jon Weisman wrote a lengthy piece on ESPN about what the future might hold for Clayton Kershaw. I think Jon nailed it on the head right here:

Either way, there’s an explosion within reach for Kershaw — oh, you better believe there is. He turns 23 on March 19, and soon after, he might turn Dodger Stadium back into a place where fans are racing through the crowds for their seats, the way they did for those transcendent heroes of the recent or distant past, for no other reason than to drool over his next pitch or exult in his supremacy.

Clayton did all that. The only thing missing from his resume was the defining postseason run that all the other great Dodger pitchers had done.

This week, Clayton Kershaw had that run.

Clayton Kershaw’s exploits have become so much bigger than life, that it is hard to believe he’s real.

And he’s ours.

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