Dodgers' Bellinger exits with bruised knee

Dodgers outfielder Cody Bellinger left Los Angeles' 4-3 walk-off victory over the Cincinnati Reds before the top of the fourth inning Monday, a half-inning after he was hit by a fastball on the side of his right knee.

After the game, the Dodgers could breathe a sigh of relief as they said Bellinger's X-rays were negative.

"Just a nasty bruise," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said.

Bellinger took a 95 mph running fastball to the side of the leg two innings after connecting on an RBI ground-rule double against Reds starter Luis Castillo. Bellinger hit the ground immediately after he was plunked by the pitch, and he was met at home plate by Roberts as well as a member of the training staff.

Bellinger got to his feet and lingered for a few minutes before he walked to first base with his manager. He stayed in the game but appeared to be in discomfort.

Bellinger never advanced off first base after A.J. Pollock and Max Muncy struck out. He returned to the dugout, slammed his helmet into the helmet rack and exited into the clubhouse. He was replaced in right field by Alex Verdugo.

Bellinger, the 2017 National League Rookie of the Year, is off to a hot start for the Dodgers. He leads the NL with a .433 batting average, nine home runs, 23 RBIs, 22 runs and 29 hits.

It already was an eventful night at Dodger Stadium, with Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw making his first start following a recovery from shoulder inflammation. The game also marked the return to Dodger Stadium of former Dodgers Yasiel Puig, Matt Kemp, Alex Wood and Kyle Farmer, who now play for the Reds.

Puig hit a home run off Kershaw in his first at-bat as a visiting player at Dodger Stadium.

--Field Level Media

04/16/2019 6:20

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