The 38,266 strong crowd knew they would be in for a treat and the weather didn’t disappoint.
After an hour of rain delay at the historic SCG the 2014 MLB season was underway. The clouds still looked threatening however as the tarps stayed on for a while before first pitch and another tarp being placed down on the cricket pitches in centre field.
Wade Miley faced the Dodgers for the first inning of the new season. He started off with a gem striking out Puig on three pitches and then Justin Turner to have the perfect strikeout game going after 2 batters. Hanley Ramirez ended that with a groundout to second but nonetheless it was a perfect first inning.
Clayton Kershaw got the start for LA and also started with a strikeout. He then gave up a hit on a hot grounder through the defense of Hanley and then a single that was slapped to left. He got out of the jam however and it was 0-0 after one.
The Dodgers were the first to score in the 2nd inning with Gonzalez starting things off with a walk and then SVS smacked a ball that everyone thought was gone only to be brought down by the wind and scored as a double. Andre Ethier scored the first run of the game on a grounder to the second baseman. It was Mark Ellis-esque.
Kershaw already had 3 strikeouts after 2 innings as he pitched his first 1-2-3 inning of the campaign. He was averaging 13.50 K/9 in 2014, amazing.
It was all about Scott Van Slyke once again as, this time, he homered to bring home both he and Adrian Gonzalez after he got on with a passed ball strikeout. He hammered it into the right field corner and used the wind to get the first HR of the season.
While Kershaw was going swimmingly LA threatened again with the bases loaded in the 5th but Andre Ethier struck out to end the threat. AJ Ellis walked and Clayton Kershaw failed to bunt after making a “Chewbacca” sound when he bunted the 3-2 pitch foul. Turner kept it going with his first Dodgers hit, a single, Ramirez reached on a throwing error off Martin Prado.
Miley ended his day after that inning with his line of 5IP, 7K, 3H, 3ER and 2BB.
The man replacing Miley was Dido Gregorius. Didi had played for the Canberra Cavalry in the Australian Baseball League in 2010/11 and he won the leagues inaugural golden glove.
Kershaw went for a shut out until the 6th inning when Goldschmidt doubled to left, moved to third on a passed ball and then scored on a Trumbo ground out that was a carbon copy of the Dodgers’ first run in the second inning.
God I hate the Angels and any ex Angels for that matter.
The Dodgers ace stayed in the game in the 7th inning after going through 91 pitches for 21 outs or 7 innings. He left after 6.2IP however with 1ER, 7K, 5H and 1BB. The ace threw 101 pitches and would have got out of the 7th if it weren’t for Turner’s first error in a Dodger uniform with one out in the 7th.
Adrian Gonzalez doubled under the glove of Mike Trumbo in the top of the 8th to add some excitement to this already fired up crowd. Van Slyke got his first walk of the season to make his OBP to .750 so far.
The 00 Brian Wilson came to the mound for the 8th inning to end Perez’ night at 0.1IP, 0K, 0H, 0ER and 0BB. He threw a perfect eighth with 2K’s and no one aboard.
Cuban infielder Alex Guerrero was set to get his first MLB at bat but was robbed of it after the D-Backs changed their pitcher and allowed Mike Baxter to come into the game for the Dodgers, he flew out and Puig followed suit to take the game to the bottom of the ninth.
Kenley Jansen came on for the Dodgers first save opportunity for 2014 and took over from Brian Wilson. The beard went 1IP, 2K, 0H, 0BB, 0ER and a 0.00 ERA.
He was so close to perfect, 1IP, 0H, 1BB, 1K and 0ER and gave the Dodgers a 3-1 win to go 1-0 to start the new season.
Kershaw was credited with the first W of the season and the Dodgers look to back it up tomorrow against the same team just 14 hours after this one finished. Goooood night everybody.