Rich Hill only managed to pitch one inning before being removed due to left forearm discomfort, but the Los Angeles Dodgers had a lead at the time of his exit and added to it throughout the night to defeat the San Francisco Giants, 9-2.
After Hill set the Giants down in order, Chris Taylor started the scoring with a three-run home run in the bottom of the first inning. The homer was Taylor’s sixth this season and second off Giants starter Drew Pomeranz.
Taylor added to his big night with a ground-rule double in the third inning and a leadoff homer in the fifth. The multi-home run game was Taylor’s first of his career.
The night was also memorable for Kyle Garlick as he clubbed his first home run. His solo shot to center field extended the Dodgers’ lead to 4-0 in the second inning. Garlick joined Walker Buehler, Will Smith and Matt Beaty as Dodgers who have hit their first career home run this season.
With L.A. holding a comfortable 7-2 lead, Cody Bellinger essentially put the game away with a two-run home run in the bottom of the seventh. The homer was Bellinger’s 24th this season, which has him one shy of matching his entire output from last season.
Bellinger additionally hit 24 home runs prior to the All-Star break as a rookie in 2017. He’s now twice tied Mike Piazza (1996) for the eighth-most homers in franchise history before the Midsummer Classic.
The Dodgers bullpen backed Hill with eight strong innings, and the only runs allowed coming on solo homers by Tyler Austin (fourth inning) and Mike Yastrzemski (sixth). Austin’s two-out home run off Yimi Garcia broke up a combined perfect game.
With the victory, the Dodgers became the first team to 50 wins this season. They also were first to 20, 30 and 40 wins. In terms of calendar, it is the second-earliest date a team has reached 50 wins in MLB history, behind only the 2001 Seattle Mariners (June 14).
At 50-25, the Dodgers are tied with the 1997 club for the second-best start in L.A. franchise history. The 1974 Dodgers were 51-24.