July 13, 2024

Ohtani has second 2-homer game of season as Dodgers blank Royals 3-0. Betts’ hand broken in the 7th

Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Brady Singer throws to the plate during the first inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers Sunday, June 16, 2024, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

By JOE REEDY AP Sports Writer
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Shohei Ohtani had his second two-homer game this season, Tyler Glasnow pitched seven innings of three-hit ball and the Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the Kansas City Royals 3-0 on Sunday as Mookie Betts left in the seventh inning after a pitch broke a bone in his left hand.
Even though the Dodgers took two of three in the series it was a tough weekend as two of their star players will be sidelined for an extended period. Right-hander Yoshinobu Yamamoto was placed on the 15-day injured list before the game due to a strained rotator cuff in his right shoulder.
Betts made an appearance in the clubhouse after the game and said he will visit a hand specialist on Monday, which should help determine how long he might be out.
“It’s a big blow. I feel bad for Mookie because he’s having an MVP-type season,” manager Dave Roberts said of Betts’ injury.
Freddie Freeman also went deep for the Dodgers.
Bobby Witt Jr., who leads the majors with a .327 batting average, had one of Kansas City’s three hits. The shortstop has hit safely in 26 of 28 games since May 17.
Betts was hit in the left hand by a 97.9 mph fastball from Dan Altavilla. The pitch hit Betts at the top of the hand, near the wrist. Betts fell to the ground and was writhing in pain in the batter’s box as trainers and Roberts came out to tend to him.
“You just gotta stay in there. Can’t be scared, you know, kind of stay there, especially with a guy with a pretty good slider,” Betts said. “Just kind of up and in. I was holding my ground. Unfortunately, it hit me in the hand.”
Betts’ injury dampened what were standout efforts by Ohtani and Glasnow.
Ohtani came into the game batting just .219 in June and with most of his contact being ground balls. For at least one game, he was able to reverse that.
The Japanese superstar drove a sinker from Brady Singer (4-4) 451 feet over the center field wall with one out in the third inning.
“It’s a really good sign that I’m able to hit the ball that far in that direction,” Ohtani said through his interpreter.
Ohtani then got his 18th career multihomer game when he connected on a first-pitch slider from Singer and put it over the right field wall. It was also his 19th homer of the season, which is fourth in the majors.
“When he does things the right way, gets his pitch and uses the big part of the field its pretty special,” Roberts said. “Even that second homer on a secondary pitch, for him to hit it like that instead of pulling it foul or hitting it on the ground speaks to how he is seeing the ball better.”
Freeman followed three pitches later with a solo shot to right-center. It is the third time this season Ohtani and Freeman have gone back to back.
Glasnow (7-5) struck out nine and leads the majors with 125 strikeouts as he picked up his first victory since May 4. Evan Phillips came on for his 10th save in the ninth.
“I knew I had to be efficient. Glad I was able to keep the pitch count low and get through seven innings,” Glasnow said. “I tried to get ahead and mix up my pitches more. Not be so heavily relying on the fastball.”
It is the fifth time in Singer’s career and first this season he has allowed at least three homers in a game. The right-hander allowed five hits and three runs in six innings with four strikeouts.
“He was able to force some contact early. He trusted his stuff through some good sliders,” manager Matt Quatraro said of Singer. “It looked like they might have been sitting on them on the homers.”
TRAINER’S ROOM
Royals: C Salvador Perez (right knee inflammation) was back in the lineup as the designated hitter after sitting out Saturday’s game. … RHP Michael Wacha (left foot fracture) will make a rehab start in Arizona on Monday.
Dodgers: RHP Michael Grove (right intercostal strain) was placed on the 15-day injured list.
UP NEXT
Royals: RHP Alec Marsh (5-3, 3.63 ERA) takes the mound on Tuesday for the start of a three-game series at Oakland.
Dodgers: Head to Colorado for three games starting Monday. LHP James Paxton (6-1, 3.92 ERA) is 1-1 in his last five starts.