LOS ANGELES — Justin Turner welcomed himself back into the middle of the lineup, hitting a home run in his return from the disabled list in leading the Dodgers to a 7-2 win over the Reds on Friday night at Dodger Stadium.
Turner missed 19 games with a strained right hamstring before getting activated on Friday. While he was quite productive at the plate before hitting the disabled list — hitting .379/.453/.493 — Turner only had one home run to his ledger.
That changed in his first at-bat, launching a ball into the Dodgers bullpen in left field, scoring Chris Taylor for a quick 2-0 lead.
The Dodgers rallied for two runs in each of the third and fourth innings, with Franklin Gutierrez in the middle of things in both rallies. Getting the start against the left-hander, Gutierrez singled in both frames against right-handed reliever Jake Buchanan, the second of which drove home two runs.
It was much-needed production from Gutierrez, who has played sparingly of late and was in an 0-for-12 slump before Friday, with his last hit on May 16.
Logan Forsythe also got into the mix, reaching base twice with a walk and a hit. The single in the seventh inning snapped an 0-for-26 skid for Forsythe dating back to May 30.
The runs were a welcome sight for a club that scored 18 runs in its previous eight games, including seven of those game held to two or fewer runs.
They also supported Rich Hill, who continued to struggle with wildness but was able to last through five innings allowing just one run on two hits. He walked three and struck out five, and has 16 walks in 18 innings in his last four starts.
What a relief
Kenta Maeda, the odd man out in the starting rotation for now, made his first major league relief appearance on Friday and was highly effective. Maeda struck out six in four solid innings, allowing only a solo home run to Joey Votto, to earn his first major league save.
Hyun-jin Ryu also had a four-inning save this season, on May 25, giving the Dodgers a pair of four-inning saves in the same season since Matt Herges and Alan Mills did so in 2000.
Dodger Stadium fell silent in the bottom of the second inning when Austin Barnes lined a ball 103 mph back to the mound, where pitcher Amir Garrett tried to stop the ball with his pitching hand. The good news is that Garrett wasn’t hit in the head or face by the ball, but did lay on the ground for a few minutes.
Garrett eventually got up and even tried to convince manager Bryan Price and the team trainer he could remain in the game, throwing a few warmup pitches, but cooler heads prevailed and Garrett was removed, just six batters into the game.
Garrett was diagnosed with a left hand contusion, and X-rays were negative.
The Dodgers will activate Alex Wood off the disabled list to start Thursday night’s game, another 7:10 p.m. PT start. The Reds will counter with right-hander Asher Wojciechowski in the middle game of the series.
Home runs: Justin Turner (2), Kike Hernandez (5); Joey Votto (17)
WP - Rich Hill (3-2): 5 IP, 2 hits, 1 run, 3 walks, 5 strikeouts
LP - Amir Garrett (3-5): 1+ IP, 2 hits, 2 runs, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts
Sv - Kenta Maeda (1): 4 IP, 3 hits, 1 run, 6 strikeouts