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Shohei Ohtani hits 430-foot shot for his first Dodgers home run

LOS ANGELES — It was finally Shohei Ohtani vintage Wednesday with a loud crack, back arched on his follow-through and a high finish as the baseball flew deep into the night.

In his ninth game with his new team, Ohtani finally hit his first home run in a Dodgers uniform and everything seemed right again.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts had been asked about Ohtani and his lack of power for days. And when one of the Dodgers’ most anticipated home runs went over the wall in right center, the player who hit it was as stoic as ever.

Ohtani ran onto the bases with no expression on his face and received his salute at home plate from teammate Freddie Freeman. There was a shower of sunflower seeds from Teoscar Hernandez as he approached the dugout steps, then high-fives all around in the Dodgers dugout.

That the long ball came at a key moment only increased the excitement for the Dodgers, who cruised to a 5-4 victory to complete a three-game sweep of the rival San Francisco Giants.

Ohtani’s homer came one inning after the Giants had scored a run and threatened to steal a victory before traveling to San Francisco for their home opener. The Giants will now have to limp back, losing in five of seven games to open their season.

Tyler Glasnow picked up his second win in a Dodgers uniform by allowing three runs on four hits over six innings as he threw a record 100 pitches and appeared to fade late in his outing.

Glasnow had seven strikeouts with two walks. The only hit he allowed in the first four innings was a homer in the third off No. 8 hitter Patrick Bailey.

Miguel Rojas received the start at shortstop against Giants left-hander Kyle Harrison and homered in the fourth inning, his second of the season. Rojas didn’t hit his first home run last season until August 2, then hit four more over the next 6½ weeks, with the surge continuing through 2024.

Mookie Betts moved to second base for the night and continued his torrid start on offense. His leadoff single in the first inning put him on base in seven of his first nine at-bats this season.

Rojas gave the Dodgers their first run in the second inning on an RBI groundout before the Giants tied it on Bailey’s home run in the third.

Will Smith hit an RBI double in the third inning and Hernandez followed it with an RBI single as the Dodgers extended their advantage to 3-1. Rojas’ home run in the fourth made it 4-1.

California Daily Newspapers

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