The Los Angeles Dodgers took the field Thursday night for the start of their final series at home this season. A win guaranteed they’d knock at least one off their magic number to clinch the National League West.
Brett Anderson’s first start since coming off the disabled list came with some expected rust and struggles. The Colorado Rockies knocked the southpaw around in the second inning and jumped out to a 3-1 lead.
Colorado held a 4-2 lead when the bottom of the seventh inning began. Relief pitcher Jordan Lyles allowed a leadoff double to pinch-hitter Andre Ethier.
That promoted Rockies manager Walt Weiss to summon left-hander Boone Logan out of the bullpen. Logan retired pinch-hitter Justin Turner, but then walked the next three batters. Logan’s third walk scored a run.
He then faced Yasmani Grandal, who was 3-for-3 at that point with a single, double and home run. But each of Grandal’s three at-bats were left-handed.
Despite being turned around to the right side, where the switch-hitting catcher doesn’t have as much power, Grandal hit a grand slam to center field:
Down by one…were you worried?
YAZ wasn't. ?? pic.twitter.com/FVE4DR6olm
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) September 23, 2016
“I think I kept my emotions in check,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts joked when asked about his dugout celebration.
“It’s one of those things that as a coach or manager, you’re in there every at-bat for these guys. You know the struggles Yasmani has had, you know he’s had a great night but right-handed not so much. To see that inning through like that, with the exclamation mark, was a little emotional.”
Grandal became the first Dodger to hit a home run from both sides of the plate in a game since Orlando Hudson in 2009, and the first Dodgers catcher with multiple five-RBI games in a single season since Mike Piazza in 1995.
The 27-year-old Grandal has been slowed by a sore right elbow, but said after the win his struggles were more a byproduct of attempting to overcompensate. Grandal leads all catchers this season with 27 home runs.