Zach McKinstry Explains Mookie Betts, Gavin Lux Behind Dodgers’ Head-Patting Celbration

The Los Angeles Dodgers have had plenty to celebrate so far in the 2021 season, and most highlights have been accompanied by several players tapping the top of their head after a home run or other big hit.

“We’re going to keep that one low key,” Edwin Rios recently said when asked for the meaning of th celebration. “It’ll be a surprise. Maybe Mook or Gav, because they kind of created it, so I’ll let them explain that.”

For fans of the NBA, the gesture appeared quite familiar as it’s often seen whenever a player throws down a slam dunk on an opponent. Dodgers broadcaster Joe Davis explained over the weekend that indeed was the derivative, and Zach McKinstry confirmed as much.

“I think it was just Mookie and Gavin messing around. It’s like a basketball terminology, like you’re dunking on somebody,” he explained. “It’s just kind of a way of showing a good play.”

McKinstry did the gesture after hitting a home run during Sunday’s win over the Washington Nationals. It was second career homer, but first to actually clear a fence. “It was nice,” McKinstry said.

“Definitely awesome when you get to jog the bases instead of having to run them.”

The long ball capped off an impressive weekend for the rookie as he went 3-for-6 with one double, one home run and five RBI in the final two games against the Nationals. McKinstry’s opportunities have been extended over the past week due to Betts being out of the lineup because of lower back stiffness.

“He puts great at-bats together and I think we’re just seeing the beginning. I think he’s going to have an outstanding year for us,” Taylor said. “I don’t think this is a hot streak or anything. He’s just playing up to all of our expectations. He’s outstanding.”

Dodgers hopeful with Betts

Betts has missed the past four games, but Dodgers manager Dave Roberts was encouraged by his progress throughout the weekend and is hopeful to have him back in the lineup for the series opener against the Colorado Rockies.

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