This Day In Dodgers History: Kiké Hernandez, Joc Pederson Lead Way In Setting Opening Day Home Run Record Against Diamondbacks
Kelvin Kuo/USA TODAY Sports

On March 28, 2019, the Los Angeles Dodgers began the season in emphatic fashion as they set an Opening Day record and tied a franchise all-time mark for any game with eight home runs against the Arizona Diamondbacks.

They were led by two apiece from Kiké Hernandez and Joc Pederson. Austin Barnes, Corey Seager, Cody Bellinger and Max Muncy also contributed to the record-setting afternoon at Dodger Stadium.

The home run barrage began with Pederson, who clubbed a two-run blast to center field in the second inning. Beyond Pederson giving the Dodgers a 2-0 lead, there was added satisfaction in Pederson’s homer as it came off Zack Greinke.

He famously referred his former teammate as an “easy out,” which Pederson revealed prior to facing Greinke for the first time since he signed with the Diamondbacks in free agency. Greinke ran into more trouble in the fourth inning as he surrendered back-to-back home runs to Hernandez and Austin Barnes.

Corey Seager then took Greinke deep for a solo shot, extending the Dodgers’ lead to 7-0 and knocking the right-hander out of the game. It was the first time Greinke allowed four home runs since the Dodgers hit that many during a 2016 game.

With the Dodgers comfortably ahead 7-1 in the sixth inning, Pederson swatted his second homer of the day, tagging Matt Koch for a two-run blast.

The Dodgers’ final home runs in 12-5 rout came in the seventh, when Muncy, Bellinger and Hernandez each hit a solo shot. Bellinger and Hernandez combined for back-to-back home runs with two outs.

Opening Day was a sign of things to come both in the short- and long-term for L.A. They scored 34 runs through the first three games of the season, which marked the most in franchise history since the Brooklyn Grays plated 35 in 1887.

Moreover, they set an L.A. franchise record in 42 runs in the four-game set against the Diamondbacks, which fell just two shy of tying the Dodgers’ all-time record set when the 1953 team scored 44 runs against the St. Louis Cardinals; the 1929 club initially held the mark with 44 runs scored during a four-game set with the Philadelphia Phillies.

The Dodgers slugged a total of 14 home runs during the Opening Series against the Diamondbacks, which was one short of tying a franchise record for most most (15) in a four-game series, which was against the New York Mets in 2017.

Lastly, the Dodgers finished the 2019 season with a National League record 279 home runs. It previously was held by the Houston Astros (249) and the Dodgers’ all-time record was 236 home runs in a single season.

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