Dodgers: 3 surprising stars who got LAD back on track after Opening Day

Adam Weinrib
DENVER, CO - APRIL 4: Starting pitcher Julio Urias #7 of the Los Angeles Dodgers delivers to home plate during the first inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on April 4, 2021 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - APRIL 4: Starting pitcher Julio Urias #7 of the Los Angeles Dodgers delivers to home plate during the first inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on April 4, 2021 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images) /
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DENVER, CO – APRIL 3: Zach McKinstry #8 of the Los Angeles Dodgers celebrates as he runs home on his way to an inside-the-park home run to take the lead in the eighth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on April 3, 2021 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images) /

2. Zach McKinstry

We all knew Zach McKinstry had “it,” but…it sure is nice he got a chance to introduce himself on the national stage thanks to one of the wildest plays in recent MLB history, right?

By now, we’ve all seen the madness. Raimel Tapia’s attempted home run robbery on a McKinstry shot turned comical, leading to a Tapia injury, a rolling baseball, and four bags the hard way for the last offensive player on the roster.

This weirdness broke an eighth-inning tie, and was the Dodgers’ first inside-the-parker in three and a half years, a baton Chris Taylor was surely more than happy to pass along.

McKinstry hasn’t been a one-hit wonder, though. Four games into the season, the kid’s appeared in a trio of contests, posting a small-sample-size .429 average and 1.571 OPS — but you’d sure rather see those numbers be inauthentically huge than worryingly small, right?

The 26-year-old has a chance to fill two important roles for the Dodgers moving forward: Kiké Hernández’s Swiss Army knife position in 2021, and potentially Taylor’s role beyond this season.

Whatever happens from hereon out, he’s already got one fate-shifting moment under his belt, picking up his teammate Blake Treinen with the most bizarre of clutch homers.

If he can continue hitting at an advanced clip while starting two or three games a week, Los Angeles could have another extremely valuable utility man in their midst.

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