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Ohtani breaks Matsui’s home run record, Dodgers end Mets win streak – Trentonian

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Shohei Ohtani of Los Angeles Dodgers celebrates after hitting his two-run home run in the dugout during the third inning of a baseball game against the New York Mets in Los Angeles, Sunday, April 21, 2024. (AP Photo/Kyusung Gong)

LOS ANGELES – Shohei Ohtani broke Hideki Matsui’s Major League record for home runs by a Japanese-born player with a huge two-run shot in the third inning, and the Los Angeles Dodgers snapped their three-game skid with a 10-0 victory at the third inning. New York Mets on Sunday.

Ohtani crushed a 450-foot line drive from Adrian Houser (0-2) deep into the right-field bleachers for the two-time AL MVP of the year’s fifth home run and the 176th of his six-plus seasons in the majors with the Angels and Evaders. That eclipsed the record of Matsui, the former New York Yankees slugger who played 10 seasons in North America.

“Honestly, I was just relieved to put an end to it,” Ohtani said through his interpreter.

Ohtani said Matsui’s record “wasn’t something I was aware of when I first started my career here, but as I learned more about it,” he started paying attention to the numbers.

When asked if he also hopes to match Matsui’s famous playoff balance if and when he finally reaches the MLB postseason, Ohtani joked that he is currently more focused on breaking manager Dave Roberts’ record for most home runs by a Japanese-born player in a Dodgers uniform.

Roberts leads Ohtani in that competition 7-5.

“Hideki Matsui was a great ballplayer, a great home run hitter, a world champion,” Roberts said. “I know Shohei admired him, so it’s a big deal if he exceeds that goal. I know whatever kind of target Shohei faces, he’s trying to take them all down.

Tyler Glasnow (4-1) struck out 10 and held New York to seven hits in eight strong innings as Los Angeles snapped the Mets’ six-game winning streak and salvaged the final from a disappointing 3-6 homestand.

Andy Pages hit a three-run shot for his first career homer during the Dodgers’ eight-run fifth inning. Freddie Freeman and Will Smith also delivered two-run doubles and Mookie Betts hit an RBI single in the fifth.

“It’s the first full baseball game I can remember (by the Dodgers this season),” Roberts said. “We were clean defensively. I thought the at bats were really good, especially the guys at the bottom of the order. …And then of course what Tyler did. Overall it was fun just watching a clean baseball game.

After winning 12 of 15 since their 0-5 start to the season, the Mets were eliminated for the second time this year. New York had won eight of the previous nine.

Houser had no control over the Dodgers’ high-powered lineup, giving up seven runs on eight hits and four walks in his fourth start for his new team.

Los Angeles chased Houser with six straight batters reaching base in the fifth. After Betts drove in Pages, Ohtani singled Houser’s leg before Freeman and Smith delivered back-to-back doubles.

“I just make too many mistakes,” Houser said. “I couldn’t get in sync in that fifth inning. I have to be able to make some quick outs there and keep the team in the game. These guys played great and I’m letting them down now. That is not possible. I have to clean up some things.”

In his second at bat of the inning, Pages put the Dodgers up 10-0 with a long drive to center Grant Hartwig for his first home run in the 23-year-old Cuban outfielder’s fifth Major League game.

Glasnow then provided the shutdown start the Dodgers needed after giving up 15 runs to the Mets in the previous two games. The veteran right-hander worked quickly and efficiently, becoming the first Dodgers starter to pitch into the eighth inning since Clayton Kershaw did so on July 15, 2022.

Glasnow, who got sick six days earlier during a rough start against Washington, walked no batters, gave up no extra-base hit and allowed only one Mets runner to reach second base before the eighth.

New York loaded the bases with three singles in the eighth, but Glasnow struck out pinch-hitter Tyrone Taylor to end the inning, pumping his fist to a standing ovation from the crowd of 49,287.

“(I had) a good day, and I think if I had to give up runs in the last inning, it just leaves a bad taste in your mouth,” Glasnow said.


Mets: LHP Brooks Raley was on the 15-day injured list with elbow inflammation. He had thrown just once since Monday. New York recalled Hartwig from Triple-A Syracuse. Raley said he had been feeling sore for “a few days” but is confident he will bounce back soon after receiving a cortisone shot.

Dodgers: RHP Walker Buehler will make at least one more minor league rehab appearance, taking the mound for Triple-A Oklahoma City on Wednesday. Buehler’s control has not been sharp thus far in his return to the mound after Tommy John surgery, so the Dodgers are not committing to a return date for the old mainstay of their starting rotation.


Mets: José Quintana (1-1, 3.05 ERA) takes the mound in San Francisco on Monday to open a three-game series.

Dodgers: James Paxton (2-0, 2.81 ERA) starts Tuesday in Washington to open a nine-game trip.