The Associated PressLOS ANGELES (AP) — Yasiel Puig has said he has matured, and that’s why he has hit so well early this season. Whatever it is, the Los Angeles Dodgers will welcome more of it.
Puig homered and drove in four runs to help the Dodgers overcome a sloppy defensive game to beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 8-4 on Saturday night to celebrate Jackie Robinson Day. He also hit a sacrifice fly in the first inning, singled twice and walked for a team-high 10th time.
This performance came with all the players wearing No. 42 in honor of Robinson, and Puig thinks he might have found a lucky charm in the number.
“I think I’m going to have to wear [it] under my jersey every day,” Puig said.
Puig’s three-run home run in the eighth was his fourth of the season and came while the Dodgers were trying to hang on to a one-run lead.
Alex Wood (1-0) pitched 3⅓ scoreless innings of relief to earn the win and Kenley Jansen got the last four outs for his third save of the season.
Los Angeles went ahead 5-4 in the fifth on catcher Chris Herrmann’s throwing error — one of five errors in the game — before Puig padded the lead with his three-run shot in the eighth off closer Fernando Rodney.
Austin Barnes also went deep for the Dodgers, getting his first career homer.
Nick Ahmed homered and drove in all four runs for Arizona, which had only five hits on the night.
“That’s baseball,” Arizona third baseman Jake Lamb said. “You’re going to score runs sometimes, you’re going to put up one run and win the game sometimes.
That’s how the game works, so you can’t sit here and get frustrated by the offense.”
Diamondbacks left-hander Patrick Corbin (1-2) started but struggled in his six innings, giving up five runs — three earned — and nine hits with three walks.
Kenta Maeda lasted only four innings for the Dodgers, allowing four runs and four hits with a walk.
He has only gone five innings in each of his first two starts.