Zach Greinke threw seven shutout innings on Thursday in what started out as a close game, until a Yasiel Puig grand slam in the eighth.
Greinke had his best start since returning from his collarbone injury Thursday night in the 5-0 win against the Braves.
In four starts since his return, he had not lasted more than 5.1 innings – allowing 14 earned runs and seven walks, with only 10 strikeouts.
Greinke lasted seven innings Thursday, throwing 117 pitches, striking out seven, giving up four hits and three walks. He was consistent throughout the night with a strikeout in every inning except for the fifth.
Greinke's only trouble came in the seventh inning with back-to-back singles from Freddie Freeman and Brian McCann. This is where he reminded everyone that he came to the Dodgers an elite pitcher, striking out Dan Uggla and inducing fly outs to end the inning.
Ramiro Pena's line out was most notable. A deep line drive to left field that looked like it may score Freeman from third, if not for a fantastic throw from Scott Van Slyke that surprised most of the crowd.
Greinke threw 117 pitches, the most he has thrown in more than a year. He made every pitch count, and seemed to be working at a much more deliberate pace than normal.
The Dodgers only provided one run of support, but Greinke stepped up with his seven shutout innings, leaving the game in position for the win.
As he left the mound in the seventh, the stadium roared. But it was nothing compared to the insanity that ensued in the bottom of the eighth.
Skip Schumaker and Luis Cruz hit consecutive singles with one out, and Hanley Ramirez came in to pinch hit, but was walked to load the bases for none other than Yasiel Puig.
The crowd was on their feet before Puig even came up to the plate. They knew something special was going to happen.
In his first career bases-loaded at bat he smashed a no-doubt grand-slam home run into the right field bleachers. As if the storyline has not been ridiculous enough in Puig's first three games.
There are only a few times that Dodger Stadium has exploded in such a way, and they are the kind of memories that stick with a fan forever.
I do not think anybody is going to forget this home run for a very, very long time.
Puig's grand slam made the score 5-0, securing the win for Greinke and beating the Braves in the first game of this series.
Friday the Dodgers send Hyun-Jin Ryu to face Paul Maholm for the second game of the series.
But really, everyone is going to be watching to find out, "What will Yasiel Puig do next?"