KANSAS CITY, Mo. – If it were a prize fight, they would have stopped it early. But nobody has been able to go the distance with the Dodgers recently.
The Dodgers hit home runs in each of the first four innings, scored seven times in the first two and routed the Kansas City Royals 13-3 Saturday night to extend their winning streak to 12 games.
That is their longest winning streak since the 1976 team also won 12 in a row in April and May. They could match the longest streak in Los Angeles Dodgers history with a win Sunday and the longest in MLB this season with two more – the Seattle Mariners and Atlanta Braves each had 14-game winning streaks this season.
The Dodgers have won each of the games during the streak by multiple runs, scoring eight or more runs in eight of them including the past four. Overall they have outscored their opponents 78-28 during the 11 games.
Even in that parade of dominant wins, Saturday’s stood out.
The beating was so swift and thorough that Mookie Betts had a three-hit game … in the top of the third inning and Dodgers manager Dave Roberts opted to call it a day for Trea Turner (who has started every game this season) in the fourth.
Royals starter Brad Keller never stood a chance. He gave up a leadoff home run to Mookie Betts – the 35th leadoff homer of Betts’ career (tying him with Bobby Bonds for 12th all-time). The first seven Dodgers batters reached base, five of them coming around to score.
It was the 16th time this season the Dodgers have scored five (or more) runs in a single inning, tying them with the Phillies for the most of those explosions in MLB this year.
Will Smith hit a two-run home run in the second inning, Gavin Lux a solo shot in the third and Max Muncy sent one 422 feet into the fountains for a two-run home run in the fourth.
Muncy finished the day with four hits including a double and the homer and drove in four runs, continuing his second-half rebirth.
In his past 16 games, Muncy is 19 for 58 (.328) with six doubles, five home runs and 14 RBI. Languishing well below the ‘Mendoza Line’ all season, Muncy has raised his average within hailing distance at .189.
Joey Gallo and Cody Bellinger hit back-to-back home runs when the game reached the inevitable ‘Position Player Pitching’ portion of the night in the ninth inning (Royals infielder Nicky Lopez, in this case).
The lone down note of the night came in the third inning when Royals rookie (aren’t they all?) Bobby Witt Jr. smoked a line drive, 106.5 mph off the bat, that hit Dodgers starter Andrew Heaney in the back of the left arm.
Heaney struck out the next two batters but came out after three innings and 60 pitches.