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Alex Verdugo delivers clutch hit in Dodgers big 8th inning

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The Dodgers scored eight runs in the eighth to win 8-1

MLB: Spring Training-Los Angeles Dodgers at Cincinnati Reds Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

GOODYEAR — A fast moving game was slowed down by the Dodgers putting up eight runs in the eighth inning which gave them an 8-1 win over the Cincinnati Reds at Goodyear Ballpark. The game was sold out and there was plenty of Dodger blue in the stands to see the Dodgers face their former teammates Yasiel Puig and Matt Kemp.

Two players trying to set their place on the Opening Day roster came up with nice moments in the game. One of those was outfielder Alex Verdugo who until he came up with the bases-loaded in the eighth inning was 0-for-3 with a strikeout.

But in the eighth, Verdugo hit a hard ground single to right to drive in two runs to give the Dodgers the lead. After the game, manager Dave Roberts complimented Verdugo’s clutch hitting.

“It was good, Alex has been working hard,” Roberts said, “he’s got really good bat to ball skills, plays a good outfield. And he comes up with some big hits and there is something about him that he just brings a lot of energy to our ball club.”

Then Jeter Downs greeted his former team with a run-scoring single to left to make it 3-1 Dodgers.

After a run was walked in, pinch-hitter Paulo Orlando drove a 2-0 pitch well over the left-field fence for a grand-slam and an eight run inning.

Julio Urias has been impressive so far

The second player looking to be in Los Angeles in two weeks is Julio Urias.

All he did was pitch three scoreless innings to continue his strong spring. Urias struck out three while giving up a walk and a single. Urias has made four appearances in the Cactus League, pitching a total of nine innings with one run allowed, two hits, two walks and nine strikeouts.

Aftter the game, Urias was pleased with another scoreless outing.

“I felt the fastball was a little out of control and the good thing was that the other pitches were working,” Urias said, “I am going to focus a little more on the fastball and try to have the counts a little shorter.”

Tony Cingrani’s injury did create a spot for a left-handed reliever and while Urias did not want to make the Opening Day roster because of that, he did know that this was an opportunity for him.

“You want to go out there and do your job,” Urias said, “and show them that you can compete and I do have that experience.”

Old friends part two

For the second straight day, the Dodgers faced the Cincinnati Reds and Urias faced former Dodgers Yasiel Puig, Matt Kemp, Kyle Farmer and José Peraza.

On facing Puig, “it’s funny, I was saying that earlier, things can change in a year, at the end of the day,” Urias said, “you are still teammates off the field and you try to just continue to do your work.”

The former Dodgers produced the game’s first run, Puig doubled to left center and then Peraza singled him home.

Other notable performances

  • Yimi Garcia put up more zeros with one scoreless inning and a strikeout. In seven appearances, he has not allowed a run and he has nine strikeouts against one walk.
  • The aforementioned Jeter Downs has had a couple nice moments against his former team in the past two days
  • For more, check out the box score here

Look ahead

The Dodgers will be the visiting team at Camelback Ranch for an afternoon game against their campmates, the Chicago White Sox. You can watch the game on SportsNet LA at 1:05 p.m. PDT.