The kids owned the night for the Los Angeles Dodgers in the series opener against the Atlanta Braves, with Corey Seager and Trayce Thompson combining to hit four home runs.
Seager overshadowed his housemate by putting together his first career three-home run game. At 22 years old, the shortstop became the sixth-youngest player in Major League Baseball history to have a three-homer game, per Elias Sports Bureau.
In what can be described as an understatement, Seager explained he was locked in at the plate, with Julio Teheran and any other Braves pitcher in for a long evening. “It’s one of those things where it didn’t matter where it was thrown,” Seager said.
“It looked like it was on a tee. Whether it was right there or 1 million miles away. That’s a good feeling, so hopefully it will be like that [Saturday], too. … It was one of those nights where you were locked in. I thought [Teheran] threw the ball well.”
Seager’s performance began innocently enough — a solo home run in the fourth inning cutting the Dodgers’ deficit in half. He homered again in the sixth to give the Dodgers’ a 3-2 lead, then added to it with an opposite-field solo homer in the eighth that cleared the short fence in left field.
By that point, Dodger Stadium was in a frenzy and demanded a curtain call. “That put a smile on my face,” Seager said. “It’s something you really enjoy and soak in.”
Seager became the first Dodgers rookie to hit three home runs in a game since Don Demeter did it in April 1959 when the club was playing at the Coliseum. “It’s exciting to be part of the history here,” Seager said.
For as much personal attention as he garnered, and deservedly so, Seager made sure to point out what his night meant for the Dodgers as a team. “We needed a win coming off a tough road series,” he said.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts again found himself marveling at his young shortstop’s maturation, talent and mindset. “I’m enjoying the ride, the development, the evolution, whatever you want to call it,” the rookie skipper said.
“To watch the day-to-day and get to know him as a person and ballplayer, we’re very lucky to have him. He’s just a kid that’s unfazed whether it’s a big spot or notoriety and celebrity. He just wants to play baseball. To believe he’s 22 years old is something special.”
Entering play on Saturday, Seager leads the Dodgers in total hits (62), doubles (12), home runs (12) and RBIs (31). He’s second behind Thompson with a .511 slugging percentage, .849 on-base plus slugging and 131 OPS+.