x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

MLB: Dodgers reap immediate reward after bumper trade with Red Sox

Adrian Gonzales enjoyed a Hollywood debut to his new career with the Los Angeles Dodgers after hitting a three-run homer during his first appearance since his big money trade from Boston

Adrian Gonzalez is congratulated by Matt Kemp after his three-run home run during his first innings for the LA Dodgers.
Adrian Gonzalez is congratulated by Matt Kemp after his three-run home run during his first innings for the LA Dodgers.

Adrian Gonzalez provided a Hollywood script in his first outing in Los Angeles, pounding a three-run home run in his first at-bat to help the Dodgers to an 8-2 victory over the Miami Marlins on Saturday.

Fresh off a private jet following his trade from the Boston Red Sox, first baseman Gonzalez hammered the second pitch he faced in Dodger blue over the right field wall, just the sixth Dodger to hit a home run in his debut at-bat.

"I was just looking for a good pitch to hit and trying to be aggressive I got a fastball middle in and was able to stay inside it and put a good swing on it," Gonzalez said.

"It was a great way to get things started here. It was amazing. Clayton Kershaw did an unbelievable job throwing the ball and the guys were very impressive right down the line, one through nine. It's a great team and I'm excited to be here."

Gonzalez was one of three big name players traded by the Red Sox, which saw another six players involved along with Boston paying the Dodgers a reported $11m (Dh 40.4m) to take the trio - who were on contracts with around $270m.

Boston duly lost, frittering away a 9-3 lead in front of their home supporters to be edged out 10-9 by the Kansas City Royals. Mauro Gomez, in the Red Sox team to replace Gonzalez, hit his first career home run.

Another three-run homer came in Cleveland where Michael Brantley delivered to guide the Indians to a 3-1 win against the AL East-leading New York Yankees.

The Yankees were not weakened by the loss, as closest rivals the Tampa Bay Rays slumped 4-2 to the Oakland Athletics.

Top of the AL West, the Texas Rangers strode to a 9-3 win over the Minnesota Twins, the highlight provided by Mitch Moreland's giant 463-foot three-run homer in the second inning.

The Detroit Tigers were 5-3 winners against the Los Angeles Angels, the Baltimore Orioles trounced the Toronto Blue Jays 8-2, and the Chicago White Sox, who lead in the AL Central, won a fifth straight game as they overcame the Seattle Mariners 5-4.

In the National League, Jason Heyward's three-run home run helped the Atlanta Braves beat the San Francisco Giants 7-3. Atlanta stand second in the NL East, with San Francisco top in the West, although they have near-identical records.

The Philadelphia Phillies toppled NL East front-runners the Washington Nationals, for whom a 4-2 defeat was a third in succession. It was also the Phillies' third straight win.

Nothing looks like stopping the Cincinnati Reds in the NL Central, and they returned to holding a seven-game lead over second-placed St Louis by beating the Cardinals 8-2, avenging the previous night's defeat.

The New York Mets saw off the Houston Astros 3-1, the Pittsburgh Pirates beat the Milwaukee Brewers 4-0, the Colorado Rockies defeated the Chicago Cubs 4-3, and the San Diego Padres earned a sixth straight win as home runs from Chase Headley, Carlos Quentin and Yonder Alonso brought up a 9-3 success against the Arizona Diamondbacks.

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