PHOENIX – Not since his rookie season in 2011 has Freddie Freeman hit less than five homers in his first 43 games of a season.
The Dodgers hit the 43-game mark on Wednesday and Freeman had just three homers, none since April 24. Freeman had joked about the lack of homers several times recently, making one wonder if he was really bothering him.
“No, as long as it hits .300,” he said. “I still play the same way. I’ve always been a linebacker, from gap to gap. The home runs will come.”
One finally arrived at the second entrance on Thursday night at Chase Field. The three-run homer ended a 128-plate wait for Freeman and was part of another big day for the Big Three at the top of the Dodgers ’lineup as they beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 14-1.
Mookie Betts hit base four times and scored twice. Freeman made five runs with his home run and two doubles. Trea Turner was 2 out of 4 with a triple boost.
All of the Dodgers’ starting eleven had a hit. But the powerful trio at the top combined to go 8 of 11 with seven runs scored and six runs driven, only in the first six innings.
The Dodgers have now scored 154 runs in May, averaging 6.4 per game. Thursday was the seventh time this month they have scored nine or more in a game. His 24 hits against the Diamondbacks are the highest of the season in MLB and they were just about to match the record of the Los Angeles-era franchise.
Only 11 batters took the game for the Dodgers to score six times against the Diamondbacks. They have scored several runs in the first inning for the third time in their last four games.
The only exception at that time was Wednesday: Betts Day off.
Betts was back at the top of the Arizona Dodgers lineup, batting on each of the first three innings and hitting base every time: with a double, a walk, and a single. Freeman followed Betts’ double in the first inning with one of his own to drive at Betts.
Betts now has at least one extra-base hit in each of his last seven outings and has scored at least once in each of his last 13 outings.
Will Smith led Freeman with a single push and the Dodgers rallied in the second inning. Cody Bellinger started with a single and scored on Chris Taylor’s double. After an outing, Betts took a walk.
That led to Freeman, who got a slider and came in from Diamondbacks holder Humberto Castellanos. He was neither down nor in enough and Freeman hit him 389 feet in the right field seats.
Freeman had a good opportunity to score the lead goal but the home team’s goalkeeper made the save. The 418-foot record went to his second double of the game and was one of five Dodgers hits in a row in four innings.
Freeman has 18 doubles, equaling the most Jackie Robinson (1950) for a Dodger in the first 44 games of the season, and equaling his substitute (Atlanta Braves first baseman Matt Olson) for the Major League lead.
The only Diamondbacks race in the game has traditionally been a Christian Walker home run. Fifteen of the 64 homers in Walker’s career came against the Dodgers, including four of his 12 this year.
More to come in this story.
Power trio at top of Dodgers’ lineup leads rout of Diamondbacks – Press Telegram Source link Power trio at top of Dodgers’ lineup leads rout of Diamondbacks – Press Telegram