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Freddie Freeman leads Dodgers extra-base hit barrage to sweep A’s

Emmet Sheehan got a 4-inning save!

Oakland Athletics v Los Angeles Dodgers
Freddie Freeman, when he found out Emmet Sheehan got a four-inning save.
Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

The Dodgers matched a season high with six doubles, some from expected sources and some unexpected, finishing off a sweep of the Oakland A’s, 8-2 on Thursday night at Dodger Stadium.

Miguel Rojas drove in each of the first two Dodgers runs, doubling home Kiké Hernández in the second inning and plating Max Muncy in the third. It’s been an unexpected power series from Rojas, who hit his first home run of the season on Wednesday.

Those extra-base hits are a welcome sight for Rojas, who had none in his previous 17 games and 60 plate appearances, and even with this two-day power surge has a .285 slugging percentage on the season, which ranks 235th among the 239 major league hitters with at least 250 plate appearances.

Hernández was on for Rojas in the second inning thanks to a double of his own, continuing a solid run at the plate since joining in his new team. The utility man said he’s been trying to fix some mechanical flaws and correct bad habits in his swing, and thought he was onto something just before getting traded.

In his last 21 games with the Red Sox, Hernández had no extra-base hits in 68 plate appearances. With the Dodgers, Hernández has started six of seven games (and at three different positions), thanks in part to the team facing five left-handed starting pitchers during that span. He has seven hits in 21 at-bats, hitting .333 with three doubles.

Extra-base hits from Freddie Freeman, however, are expected.

Quickest Dodgers to 40 doubles

Player Year Games to 40 Season 2B
Player Year Games to 40 Season 2B
Freddie Freeman 2023 107 TBD
Johnny Frederick 1930 112 52
Shawn Green 2003 113 49

The Dodgers first baseman had two more doubles on Thursday, giving him a major-league-leading 40 on the season through 107 team games, the fastest in franchise history to reach 40 doubles in a season. Johnny Frederick got to 40 (and 41) doubles in 112 team games for Brooklyn in 1929, on his way to a franchise-record 52 two-baggers. Shawn Green has the Los Angeles Dodgers record with 49 doubles in 2003, and he got his 40th double in the 113th game of the year.

Freeman, who is on pace for 61 doubles this season, hit a career-high 47 doubles last year. He also homered in the eighth inning.

More importantly, Freeman on Thursday had his fourth multi-hit game in a row and 10th in his last 15 games. Dating back to July 17, Freeman has 31 hits in his last 62 at-bats (.500) with 14 extra-base hits.

Against Oakland in this series, Freeman had 10 hits in 14 at-bats, with five doubles and a home run in three games.

Limited, but effective

Dave Roberts before the series finale said Julio Urías would have a pitch count in this game, the product of a left index finger issue that pushed back this start a few days and that the left-hander only threw one bullpen session in the eight off days between starts.

The maximum Urías would pitch was five innings, Roberts said, and Urías did just that, striking out five in his five scoreless frames on just 68 pitches.

He escaped a one-out single and walk in the first inning by inducing a double play, and Urías’ two other hits allowed were doubles but with two outs. Both — Jonah Bride in the third inning, and Aledmys Díaz in the fourth — were stranded. Urías punctuated his night by striking out the side in the fifth.

New role for a day

With the pending arrival of new acquisition Ryan Yarbrough likely Friday in San Diego, and the potential return of Clayton Kershaw next week in Phoenix, Emmet Sheehan’s days in the Dodgers starting rotation are numbered.

But since he was on four days rest and the Dodgers are mindful of not overusing the bullpen in this stretch of 13 consecutive game days (10 more after Thursday), Sheehan piggybacked Urías on the mound.

Sheehan entered in a 2-0 game, one that got even closer when Zack Gelof hit a solo home run off him in the sixth inning. But the Dodgers tacked on with six hits in a four-run sixth inning to provide some breathing room, making Sheehan’s duty even more clear.

He finished out the game, allowing one more solo home run in the eighth inning but nothing else. Sheehan recorded the first four-inning save by a Dodger since Kenta Maeda on September 2, 2019.

Considering Sheehan threw 56 pitches and wouldn’t be available through the weekend, and that someone needs to go to the minors when Yarbrough is activated, this was about is good of a parting shot as Sheehan and the Dodgers could have imagined.

Muncy dinged

Max Muncy was hit by a pitch on his left wrist to lead off the fifth inning. He remained in the game at third base for the top of the sixth inning, but was pinch-hit for by David Peralta in the bottom of the frame. Muncy suffered a left wrist contusion, the Dodgers announced.

X-rays on Muncy’s wrist were negative, Roberts said after the game.

Thursday particulars

Home runs: Freddie Freeman (22); Zack Gelof (5), Tyler Soderstrom (1)

WP — Julio Urías (8-6): 5 IP, 3 hits, 1 walk, 5 strikeouts

LP — JP Sears (2-8): 5 IP, 6 hits, 2 runs, 3 walks, 5 strikeouts

Sv — Emmet Sheehan (1): 4 IP, 2 hits, 2 runs, 1 walk, 3 strikeout

Up next

The homestand now complete, the Dodgers head to San Diego to face the Padres. Bobby Miller takes the mound in the opener (6:40 p.m., SportsNet LA), with Yu Darvish starting for San Diego.