Adrian Gonzalez Shines in LA Dodgers Debut
It didn't take long for the newest Los Angeles Dodger to make his mark on the team as Adrian Gonzalez's debut was a success.
Earlier in the day, ESPNLosAngeles.com writer Mark Saxon reported that the Dodgers and Boston Red Sox had reached a deal that sent Gonzo back to the West Coast. Before coming to Boston, Gonzalez spent four years with the San Diego Padres.
In his first at-bat as a Dodger, Gonzalez launched a three-run homer over the fence against Florida Marlins pitcher Josh Johnson.
Gonzo immediately showed how much he can help his new ballclub, but that would be the end of Gonzalez's contributions for the night.
The Dodgers first baseman failed to reach base in his next four plate appearances; two ended in a strikeout, one in a groundout to first base and the last resulted in a pop-out to shortstop.
Still, despite only getting one hit, that three-run bomb off the bat of Gonzalez proved to be all the runs the Dodgers would need to beat the Marlins, 8-2.
Coming into the game against Florida, Los Angeles' offense hasn't been all that impressive this season, despite adding Hanley Ramirez's bat to the lineup.
Was Gonzo's debut a success?
Clearly, Gonzalez's bat will be a huge boost for this squad. Gonzo came in hitting around the .300 mark with 16 homers and 89 RBI. By comparison, the Dodgers' top home run guy was Matt Kemp with 17, and their top RBI man, Andre Ethier, had driven in 74 runs with a team-leading average of .284.
Upon entering the Dodgers' locker room, Gonzalez's full season numbers make him the team leader in all of those categories, which is also thanks in part to his debut home run against the Marlins.
There was no doubt the Dodgers had the pitching depth to make a successful stretch run to the postseason, but with the addition of Gonzalez, now Los Angeles has more than enough offense to surpass their division rivals and take the National League West.
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