LOS ANGELES -- Yasiel Puig homered and had four RBIs and Alex Wood pitched 3 1/3 innings of hitless relief on Saturday night as the Dodgers beat the D-backs on Jackie Robinson Day, 8-4, despite four RBIs from Arizona shortstop Nick Ahmed.
"When we put that uniform No. 42 on, it's special for all of us," said Dodgers manager Dave Roberts.
Puig's three-run homer in the eighth inning had a 108.1-mph exit velocity, his fifth-hardest homer of the Statcast™era. Two of his top five have come this season.
"I wasn't sure that it was a home run so there was no reason for a bat flip," said Puig, who watched the ball at the plate until he was sure it was fair.
Wood, coming off a five-walk spot start in Chicago, got the win and Kenley Jansen secured a four-out save. More >
The Dodgers enjoyed immediate success against Arizona lefty Patrick Corbin with a pair of runs in the first inning, but Dodgers starter Kenta Maeda gave the lead right back by serving up a three-run homer to Ahmed in the second inning that had a hit probability of only 36 percent, according to Statcast™.
Austin Barnes barreled his first Major League homer in the bottom of the second off the foul pole, tying the game at 3. Ahmed singled in his fourth run in the fourth inning, but the Dodgers tied it again in the bottom of the fourth with an unearned run after Ahmed's error.
"I thought we didn't make some plays when we should have," D-backs manager Torey Lovullo said. "That's how baseball is. That's what makes it so great. We put ourselves in a position to win the game and a couple of key moments didn't go our way and a couple of plays didn't happen. The beauty of it is we can get after it tomorrow." More >
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Defensive sub: After taking over second base for the injuredJohn Forsythe (hamstring), Enrique Hernandez made a tough play throwing across his body to get Daniel Descalso to end the sixth inning.
"I was wearing No. 42; Jackie Robinson played second base and I got a little help from him," said Hernandez.
In the eighth inning, he made a running pluck from the sky of Brandon Drury's blooper with right fielder Yasiel Puig coming at him, ending the eighth inning and preventing the tying run from scoring.
"If it were me, I would have probably run away from the ball," said Roberts. "Kiké showed he is fearless and it was a huge out in the game."
"I'm glad [Puig] went down [sliding], because I wasn't going to back off," said Hernandez. "If he stayed up, it probably would have been ugly for him, because I'm a lot bigger and stronger."
Better to be lucky: Hernandez fell for Arizona catcher Chris Herrmann's pump fake to second base on a possible double-steal and was about to be picked off third base, but Herrmann's throw hit Hernandez in the back. By the time shortstop Ahmed retrieved the deflection, Hernandez was headed home with the tie-breaking run.
"Catcher gave me a good pump fake, the only way I was going to be safe was to wear it and take one for the team," said Hernandez. "If I slid into third I would have been out, so my best chance was take one off my back and it got away and I was able to score."
"I thought the runner at third base was far enough off for him to go ahead and execute the play and throw a strike to third base," Lovullo said. "I feel like we had the right thought, but just poor execution."
"The Dodgers have to win on Jackie Robinson Night." -- Roberts, whose club is 11-3 since MLB instituted the celebration
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Ahmed's second-inning home run was the 15th of his career, six of which have come against the Dodgers.
D-backs:Taijuan Walker will make his third start of the season Sunday afternoon at 1:10 p.m. MST at Dodger Stadium. Walker is coming off a loss to the Giants in which he allowed three runs (two earned). All three of the runs scored on a bases-loaded dribbler up the first-base line that he misfired toward home.
Dodgers:Rich Hill will be activated off the 10-day disabled list to make this 1:10 p.m. PT Sunday start after missing one turn with a recurring middle finger blister. Hill's signature curveball is hard to hit, but it's also hard to throw without tearing up his finger.
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