MLB.com Columnist

Bill Ladson

Taylor's two hits a bright spot vs. Kershaw

Taylor's two hits a bright spot vs. Kershaw

LOS ANGELES -- Center fielder Michael Taylor was the shining light against left-hander Clayton Kershaw during the Nationals' 3-0 loss to the Dodgers on Wednesday night.

Kershaw was dealing during the first five innings, pitching a perfect game. But with one out in the sixth, Taylor hit a screamer over the head of center fielder Joc Pederson for the first hit for Washington. Taylor, who was stranded at third base, was the only Nationals baserunner to reach scoring position.

"His fastball and everything kind of gets on you," Taylor said of Kershaw. "He has good movement with everything. For the most part, everything comes out looking the same. It makes it tough."

Taylor had a simple game plan entering the game. He vowed not to do too much when he entered the batter's box. He also didn't think about how big it was to face Kershaw. It could mess up a person thinking about it, Taylor said.

"The first at-bat I went up there, I was late on the fastball," Taylor said. "After that, I just tried to shortened up, get in a good position."

Two innings later, Taylor singled to left field.

"It tried to get in good position. Before the at-bat, I wasn't going to guess what he was going to throw me next," Taylor said. "I just went up there and tried to see the ball."

Taylor is now hitting .296 with four home runs and 13 RBIs in his last 19 games to raise his overall batting average to .244.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the Time. He also can be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.