Dodgers News: Luke Raley Relishing Opportunities Against Padres

For all the top talent the Los Angeles Dodgers have on their roster with Mookie Betts, Clayton Kershaw, Corey Seager and Justin Turner, among countless others, the organization additionally has a strong reputation for drafting and developing talent.

One of their latests success is Luke Raley, who was recalled prior to the Dodgers’ home opener when Cody Bellinger was placed on the 10-day injured list due to what has since become a hairline fracture in his left fibula. Raley made a second consecutive start in the series opener against the San Diego Padres and had a night to remember as part of an instant classic.

His solo home run in the fifth inning tied the game and was Raley’s first of his career. “It felt great,” he said after the 12-inning game. “I knew I hit it well and when I saw it go over the fence I was just extremely excited.

“I knew that tied the game up, and that’s what matters. Winning ballgames. That’s what I want to help the Dodgers do.”

Fortunately for Raley, the home run ball was retrieved as placed in his locker. “I have no idea what they had to do to get it, but they had it,” Raley said. He added an RBI single as part of a five-run 12th inning.

While several members of the Padres have openly discussed the heightened intensity and excitement of the marquee National League West matchup, several Dodgers have downplayed it. For Raley, however, it was a first-of-its-kind experience.

“It certainly felt like a rivalry to me. There was a lot of intensity in this game, and that was my first real taste of that,” he said. “It’s exciting. You have a rush the whole time, and it’s something I look forward to being a part of more.”

Raley grateful to be back with Dodgers

The Dodgers drafted Raley in the seventh round in 2016, but included him in a trade with the Minnesota Twins to acquire Brian Dozier in 2018. L.A. re-acquired Raley, along with Brusdar Graterol, in February 2020.

“When I got drafted by the Dodgers, I couldn’t have been more excited.I love the organization and wanted to be a Dodger when I got traded away,” Raley reiterated. “I loved the Twins organization as well, but this is just different.

“Coming bak and being able to contribute at this point is very surreal and awesome.”

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