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In A Rematch With The Braves, Freeman Hits His First Home Run For The Dodgers

In A Rematch With The Braves, Freeman Hits His First Home Run For The Dodgers

With the Los Angeles Dodgers, Freddie Freeman is creating a Hollywood start to his career.

It’s also a love story at this point.

Los Angeles trounced the Atlanta Braves 7-4 on Monday night, with Freeman hitting his first home run in a Dodgers uniform — against his previous team, no less — while Trea Turner’s bases-loaded double highlighted a five-run fourth inning.

Freeman and Braves catcher Travis d’Arnaud exchanged glances as he came into the batter’s box for the first time.

In the first, he didn’t waste any time in teeing off against his old club, hitting a single shot into the left-field pavilion off Huascar Ynoa (0-2). As the first baseman pointed to his family watching from a suite, the sellout crowd of 52,052 chanted “Freddie! Freddie!”

Last week’s home opener, when fans serenaded Freeman simply for hitting a double, the crowd began yelling his name in a rhythmic pattern. Every time he steps up to the plate now, he hears it.

Before the game, an emotional Freeman spent time in the Atlanta clubhouse, reminiscing about the team’s World Series victory last year, the franchise’s first since 1995.

In March, he agreed to a $162 million, six-year contract with the Dodgers, ending a 12-year stint with the Braves, the only team for which the Southern California native had ever played.

Charlie Freeman, Freeman’s small son, recognized his father’s former teammate, Dansby Swanson, and ran over to hug him before the game.

In the seventh inning, Freeman showed off his defense by diving to his right and making a backhand stab of Swanson’s liner for the first out. He was 0 for 3 on the night, with two walks and two runs.

When the Dodgers batted around in the fourth inning, they scored five runs.

Cody Bellinger started things off with an RBI groundout, and designated hitter Edwin Rios added an RBI single in a replay of the previous two NL Championship Series. Turner’s three-run double off Sean Newcomb landed between Orlando Arcia and the foul line in left, putting the game out of reach.

Bellinger led off the eighth inning with a home run, putting the Tigers up 7-4.

Guillermo Heredia and Ozzie Albies of Atlanta both hit home runs against Kershaw (2-0). This season, 14 of the Braves’ 15 home runs have been solo shots.

Kershaw yielded four runs and six hits in five-plus innings after pitching seven flawless innings at Minnesota last week. In his 100th win at Dodger Stadium, the left-hander struck out seven batters while walking none.

Craig Kimbrel earned his third save while pitching the ninth inning.

Kenley Jansen made his first visit to Dodger Stadium since signing a one-year agreement with the Braves in March. When the Dodgers’ career saves leader was honored before the game, he earned a standing ovation.

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