LOS ANGELES -- Rounding the bases on Monday night, Christian Yelich couldn't help but chuckle to himself.
A California native who grew up a Dodgers fan, Yelich happened to hit a home run in the first big league game he played at storied Dodger Stadium.
Yelich had a big night in a game the Marlins lost, 6-5. To lead off the game, he lined a single to right.
But it was the home run that was really a crowning moment, because his mother was at the game, as were other family members and friends. In all, the 22-year-old Miami left fielder estimates 150 to 200 people close to him were at the park.
"I was running around the bases thinking, 'Did that really just happen -- in front of those people?'" Yelich said. "It was kind of nice to get the first one out of the way and settle into the game, and relax. Obviously, when you come back home, there's lots of distractions -- people wanting to see you."
As a kid growing up in Thousand Oaks, Calif., Yelich attended more games than he can remember at Dodger Stadium. He was on hand when Eric Gagne had his consecutive-saves record snapped.
One of his favorite players was Shawn Green, who Yelich has been compared to.
"I don't even know how many games I've come to at this stadium," he said. "It's a lot. I've come to a lot of games with the same people who were in the stands last night. So to be able to [homer] was a surreal feeling.
"It was a cool night. Unfortunately, we couldn't get the win. But it's something I'm going to remember for a long time."