Freddie Freeman homers as Dodgers lose Cactus League opener

THE GAME: Freddie Freeman hit a two-run home run, but the Dodgers lost their Cactus League opener, 7-4, to the Milwaukee Brewers on Saturday afternoon at American Family Fields of Phoenix in Maryvale, Ariz.

PITCHING REPORT: Michael Grove, Justin Bruihl and Jordan Yamamoto each gave up a home run – two of them to Brewers outfielder Garrett Mitchell. … Eleven years after he was part of the package of prospects sent to the Boston Red Sox in the blockbuster trade that brought Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford and Nick Punto to Los Angeles, right-hander Rubby De La Rosa pitched for the Dodgers again. De La Rosa signed a minor-league contract this spring after spending the past four seasons pitching in Japan. He worked a 1-2-3 eighth inning, striking out another former Dodger (Eddy Alvarez).

HITTING REPORT: Freeman’s homer was the only extra-base hit among the Dodgers’ six hits in the loss. Andy Pages drove in a run with an RBI single. … David Peralta drew a walk on a full-count pitch clock violation. … Still recovering from a hairline fracture in the pinky finger on his right hand, Miguel Vargas played but was told not to swing. Nonetheless, he drew a six-pitch walk in his first time up.

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DEFENSE REPORT: The Dodgers are planning to make Vargas their primary second baseman despite his limited experience at the position. He had mixed results Saturday, letting a makeable play on William Contreras’ fourth-inning ground ball get through him for a single but then back-handing Sal Frelick’s low line drive later in the inning.

UP NEXT: Cubs (LHP Justin Steele) at Dodgers (LHP Robbie Erlin), 12:05 p.m. Sunday, at Camelback Ranch, SportsNet LA, 570 AM

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