It all looked so natural.
His smooth glide around the bases after clearing the Green Monster. His lightning-quick closing speed on fly balls in right field. His confident demeanor and easy smile — the same one that endeared him to Boston Red Sox fans for six years, and dazzled them again for three days this weekend.
Mookie Betts knew his return to Fenway Park would be special.
But not even he could have guessed just how sensational he’d play.
Just like in the first two games of this reunion series, Betts led the way again Sunday in the Dodgers’ 7-4 rubber-match win.
He led the game off with a single, extending his hitting streak to 15 games. He belted a two-run homer over the Monster in the sixth, giving the Dodgers a 4-0 lead. He added a key insurance run with an RBI single in the eighth, raising his batting average to a season high of .315.
For the series, he went seven for 15 with two doubles, four RBIs and only one strikeout in 16 trips to the plate.
He was so good — and still so beloved in the place he started his big league career before being traded to the Dodgers in 2020 — that the Red Sox’s television network picked Betts’ home run and pregame ovation from the crowd as its broadcast’s plays of the game Sunday.
Betts had help in the series finale.
First baseman Freddie Freeman had two doubles to match, and then surpass, Shawn Green’s previous Los Angeles Dodgers record for doubles in a season, finishing the day with an MLB-high total of 50.
Rookie pitcher Gavin Stone looked solid in his return to the majors, earning the win with a six-inning-plus, four-run outing of bulk relief.
The Dodgers doubled the Red Sox’s hit total (14 to seven) to pick up their eighth straight series win and improve to 21-4 in August.