The Dodgers opened up their Cactus League schedule on a gloomy Friday afternoon with a 13-5 victory over the Chicago White Sox at Camelback Ranch in Glendale, Arizona. The Dodgers slugged four home runs in their first exhibition win and notched 14 hits against the Pale Hose pitching staff.
Notably Matt Kemp made his first start in left field today and was 2 for 2 with a laser shot three-run home run in the bottom of the third frame and a single as well. He had three runs batted in and looked in fine physical shape. It’s looking more and more likely that he’ll break camp with the club this spring, especially if he continues to hit well.
The other guys contributed throughout the contest. Justin Turner got the scoring going with a solo shot in the bottom of the first inning against Chicago starting pitcher 26-year old right hander Dylan Covey. Enrique Hernandez added a solo shot of his own in the bottom of the third inning. The Dodgers scored five runs in the third inning and four more in the bottom of the fourth inning. Logan Forsythe homered in the fifth frame.
The White Sox had retaken the lead in the first inning on a three-run home run from Tim Anderson. It seems there will be no shortage of home runs this year. The Dodgers had an 11-5 lead after the fifth inning. They extended it to a 13-5 lead after an RBI double from Donovan Solano in the seventh inning and an RBI single from Jake Peter.
On the pitching side, starter Wilmer Font looked good by tossing two scoreless innings with two punch-outs. Top prospect Yasiel Sierra pitched two-thirds of an inning and struggled as he allowed two runs, and a walk. Switch-pitcher Pat Venditte tossed an inning and a third of shutout ball and switched arm sides in the middle of the inning. However Edward Parades stole the show by pitching a scoreless inning and striking out three. The left hander could be a valuable weapon in the bullpen this season.
Trayce Thompson got the start in right field as Yasiel Puig is battling a sore hip. Thompson looked good at the plate going 2 for 3 with an RBI and two runs scored. However he needs some work in the field as he misplayed a slicing liner early in the game. In case you were wondering Puig is slated to play on Saturday and manager Dave Roberts thinks his sore hip is due to new shoes. Go figure.
The Dodgers also acquired 27-year old right handed pitcher J.T. Chargois off of waivers from the Twins earlier this afternoon. Chargois was a second round draft pick from the Twins back in 2012. He only appeared in the majors once in 2016. That year he tossed 23 innings of 4.70 ERA and made 25 starts for Minnesota. He struck out 17 that season and finished with a 1.6 WHIP.
The Dodgers haven’t announced a starter for Saturday’s game, but Clayton Kershaw is scheduled to take the mound on Sunday. The Dodgers will play the Kansas City Royals at Surprise stadium at 12:05 PM PST. Dodger baseball is back!