4/14/22 LOS ANGELES, CA — The Los Angeles Dodgers turned on the offense in the bottom of the eighth inning as Freddie Freeman led the onslaught and Will Smith finished with a huge three-run homer, that propelled Los Angeles over the Cincinnati Reds 9-3 at Dodger Stadium.
"The offense is there, I think you guys have been able to see that the last few games," Freeman said. "But we'd like to be more consistent over the stretch of a whole game and not just an inning or two."
Walker Buehler was on the mound for the Dodgers and had a strong start as he gave up only two earned runs in 5 2/3 innings on 98 pitches with four strikeouts. Buehler started last year's home opener as well. The electric sellout crowd made their voices heard to their beloved Dodger team.
"We have some of the best fans in all of the sports," Buehler said. "It was our first game back and we had 53,000 fans. I think if you don't get jitters then something's wrong with you."
Freeman connected on a single in the first and two batters later scored the team's first run. Trea Turner also singled, which extended his MLB-best hitting streak to 25 games dating back to last season. The Dodgers collected more singles than Magic City on a Monday night. Los Angeles' five consecutive singles gave them a 3-0 early advantage.
Buehler found himself in a serious jam as he gave up a single to Tyler Stephenson, and several batters later Aristides Aquino sent a two-run homer out to the Dodger Stadium parking lot that trimmed the Dodgers lead 3-2.
That sent Buehler to the bench for David Price who had a decent series of pitches until Brandon Drury made him pay with a solo homer that tied up the game.
"Throughout the game, I kinda found my rhythm and lost it," Buehler explained. "Maybe I tried to do a little too much, it is what it is, and I think we'll settle back in."
The Dodgers offense once again led by Freeman who connected on a double, stood on second base as the enthusiastic crowd chanted loudly "FREDDIE, FREDDIE!"
The Dodger became an offensive onslaught where Smith smacked a three-run homer, and Mookie Betts, Chris Taylor got on base in the inning.
"That's about as cool as it gets right there. That was special," Freeman said regarding the chants.
Los Angeles currently sits with a 4-2 record and in first place in the National League West.
The Dodgers along with the rest of Major League Baseball (MLB) will honor the 75th anniversary of the legacy of Jackie Robinson.
The team will have a special presentation pre-game on Friday. For more photos from the home opener, click on the link below. #mlb #ladodgers #reds #cincinnatireds #losangelesdodgers #willsmith #freediefreeman #AristidesAquino #tgsportsv1