The Los Angeles Dodgers began a five-game road trip on Tuesday with a matchup against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. The meeting was the first between the two clubs since 2013, and first at the Rays’ home ballpark since 2007.
With Tampa Bay starting left-hander Matt Moore, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts had plenty of right-handed batters in his lineup. Among them was Trayce Thompson, who started in left field. Thompson has primarily seen time this season in center, though Roberts left Joc Pederson in lineup for the two-game series opener.
Scott Kazmir got off to somewhat of a shaky start against his former club, allowing the Rays to take a 1-0 lead on Evan Longoria’s RBI double in the bottom of the first inning. Kazmir limited the damage to just the one run by retiring the next two batters faced.
After Howie Kendrick hit a one-out single to center in the second, Trayce Thompson crushed a two-run home run that gave the Dodgers a 2-1 lead and landed on one of the many catwalks at Tropicana Field, never coming down:
Later in the same inning, Pederson hit a solo home run to center field off Moore:
The home runs Moore allowed were the fifth and sixth of the season in six starts. With the Dodgers leading 7-4 in the ninth inning, Yasiel Puig turned on an inside pitch to hit a booming three-run homer:
Puig’s home run proved key as J.P. Howell issued a pair of two-out walks, then allowed a single to load the bases, and hit Evan Longoria with a pitch to bring a run in. Kenley Jansen replaced Howell to record the final out and earn a save in the Dodgers’ 10-5 win.