Sports | October 21, 2020 10:42 am

Betting Big on Mookie Betts Is Paying Off for LA Dodgers

Betts had a home run and multiple stolen bases as LA won Game 1 of the World Series

Betting Big on Mookie Betts Is Paying Off for LA Dodgers
Mookie Betts of the Dodgers celebrates the team's 8-3 victory against the Tampa Bay Rays.
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By trading three talented young players to acquire Mookie Betts and then signing the former Red Sox to a $365 million contract extension, the Los Angeles Dodgers made it clear they were betting on the star right fielder to put them over the top.

For now, LA’s bet on Betts is paying off.

In Game 1 of the Fall Classic against the Tampa Bay Rays, Betts became the first player to have a home run, two stolen bases and two runs scored in a World Series game as the Dodgers rolled to an 8-3 win. Betts also joined Babe Ruth as the only other player in history to have a walk and multiple stolen bases in a single inning in a World Series game.

Though his home run came when the game was already wide open, Betts’s stolen bases were an important part of LA building an early lead against Tampa.

“Stolen bases are a thing for me,” Betts said after the win. “It’s how I create runs, create havoc on the bases. When I get on base, I’m just trying to touch home. And how I get there is how I get there.”

Betts stole a career-high 30 bases in his MVP season of 2018, a year that ended with the Red Sox beating his current team in the World Series.

“We’re so lucky to have him on our team,” said LA center fielder Cody Bellinger. “Superstar guy, superstar talent, but he continues to do the little things right, which you can always learn from.”

The Dodgers haven’t won the World Series since 1988. That will change if the four-time All-Star and four-time Gold Glove winner can help them win just three more games.