Albert Pujols doubled home three runs to cap a five-run second inning, Mookie Betts homered in his return from the injured list and the Los Angeles Dodgers hammered the Arizona Diamondbacks 13-0 on Sunday.
Betts, playing second base, returned to the Dodgers lineup and had two hits, including his 15th homer of the season in the ninth. Julio Urias pitched five scoreless innings.
Pujols’ liner down the left-field line came with two outs on a full-count pitch, the 70th and last of the day from Caleb Smith (3-8). The Diamondbacks lefty lasted just 1 2/3 innings, giving up five runs while walking five and striking out three. Smith walked Chris Taylor to force in the first run, then Justin Turner’s infield single made it 2-0.
That was plenty for Urias (13-3), who only threw 43 pitches in his first three innings compared to Smith’s 42 in the second inning alone.
Urias finished at 83 pitches, walking none and striking out seven while limiting Arizona to four singles. The Dodgers bullpen pitched four hitless innings.
Turner hit his 20th homer in the seventh with two men on against Ryan Buchter to make it 11-0.
A.J. Pollock had four hits for Los Angeles, extending his hitting streak to 11 games. The Dodgers scored twice in the fifth against Matt Peacock on Billy McKinney’s RBI single and a wild pitch.
Pollock drove in a run in the sixth off Stefan Crichton after Pujols and Corey Seager were hit by back-to-back pitches. He also brought home Corey Seager with a double in the eighth against Miguel Aguilar.
BETTS IS BACK
Betts started at second base, his original position when he was drafted by Boston. He played one game there earlier this season and started one for the Dodgers last year. Betts said playing in the infield would help reduce the strain on his left hip, which landed him on the injured list last month.
To make room for Betts, the Dodgers optioned utility man Zach McKinstry to Triple-A Oklahoma City. Los Angeles also selected the contract of RHP Yefry Ramirez from Oklahoma City and sent RHP Mitch White, Saturday night’s starter, back to the Triple-A team.
Ramirez, who pitched the final two innings on Sunday, last pitched in the majors with Pittsburgh in 2019.
Diamondbacks outfielder Ketel Marte made his first start since June 26 and picked up Arizona’s first hit with a line single to center in the first inning. Manager Torey Lovullo said Marte, who usually moves between the outfield and second base, will initially play mostly center field. Marte was sidelined with a hamstring injury.
Pollock, a former Diamondback, raised his average against Arizona this season to .526 (20 for 38). In addition to his overall hitting streak he has hit safely in all nine games against his former team this season.
Lovullo said he had no updates on the Diamondbacks who are in the COVID-19 protocol. Five players — 1B Pavin Smith, OF Stuart Fairchild, LHP Joe Mantiply and RHPs Riley Smith and Noe Ramirez — were placed on the injured list last week.
The Dodgers are off Monday before returning home to play the Astros. All-Star RHP Walker Buehler (11-1, 2.19) starts for Los Angeles.
The D-backs begin a four-game series against the Giants Monday night. RHP Taylor Widener (1-1, 4.42) pitches for Arizona.
Source: NBC Los Angeles