It'd be hard to write a better commercial for the wonders of modern jet travel than the one that Adrian Gonzalez authored on Saturday. After waking up in Boston as a member of the Red Sox, he was able to hop a Los Angeles Dodgers-sponsored charter with Nick Punto and Josh Beckett around noon Eastern time, just after the mega trade was completed.
After a cross-country flight, the first baseman arrived at Dodger Stadium for a standing ovation during pregame warmups (though not batting practice) and then an even bigger ovation when he welcomed himself back to Southern California in the best way possible during the first inning.
Because you never get a second chance to make a first impression:
Well, so much for jet lag. Gonzalez's three-run homer off Miami's Josh Johnson in the first inning of Saturday's 8-2 win over the Marlins marked only the sixth time that a player homered in his first at-bat in a Los Angeles Dodgers uniform. It was also the type of highlight that made you wish Dodger Stadium had an efficient parking lot system as a decent number of fans hadn't yet reached their seats for the official arrival of the new and improved (and very expensive) L.A. Dodgers. Still, there were a lot of fans lucky enough to see such a cool moment and they did make a lot of noise.
Stragglers weren't as fortunate as the early birds as Gonzalez went hitless over his last four at-bats. But the Dodgers did pull within a game of a postseason spot with the win, meaning there'll be more chances for Gonzalez to create that type of excitement for a fan base that can't wait to see him do more.
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