Rookie Scott Van Slyke is enjoying his first taste of the big leagues. The Dodgers left fielder made his Major League debut on May 9 and hit his first home run on May 20 at home against the Cardinals. It was an important one, as he came off the bench to hit a game-winning, three-run homer to help L.A. to a series sweep of the defending World Series champion. The son of former three-time All-Star outfielder Andy Van Slyke recently answered some questions from How do you describe this experience so far?

Scott Van Slyke: It has been great. It has been a lot of fun. It has been a tremendous learning experience. I am not playing every day and that has its challenges. I have had some spot-starts and some pinch-hitting appearances, so I am trying to really learn what to look for at the plate. It continues to be a process. When was the last time you did not play every day?

Van Slyke: It has been awhile. It has been about five years, I believe. It is tough, especially at this level. When you get up there and fall behind in the count, it is a battle. Sometimes you are just trying to foul some pitches off. What is the hardest thing to get used to?

Van Slyke: I am used to having some four at-bats per game. That helps you get a little more comfortable. At the same time, I understand that it is a long season and being here has been great. Have you had a different approach at the plate because of the sporadic playing time?

Van Slyke: I think what I am starting to learn is that you can't take too many fastballs up here because a guy's secondary stuff is usually so good. Being down in the Minor Leagues I think I got away with a little bit more. I would take a pitch, a fastball, to see what a guy had. Now when I am pinch-hitting late in the game, it is different. What is the big difference late in a game?

Van Slyke: You don't want to chase too early in the count and you don't want to take that first pitch fastball. I think I have been doing that too much. I have looked at some pitches I probably could have hit and then you are suddenly behind. Is it safe to assume that your home run against the Cardinals has been your biggest highlight this season thus far?

Van Slyke: Yes, for sure. Also, that first pinch-hit resulted in my first hit. How do you describe the emotions you felt when you got the call that you were coming up to the Dodgers?

Van Slyke: I was running on adrenaline there for a while. When I got to the ballpark, the national anthem was underway. Everything happened so quickly I never had the chance to catch my breath. It was fun, and I will always remember it. Can you talk about some of people who have helped you so far?

Van Slyke: From a coaching standpoint, our hitting coach Dave Hansen, for sure. Confidence is not a problem for me, but it has been about keeping me straight as I try and figure out what pitchers want to do against me in certain situations. Matt Kemp has really helped me with my thought process, about having that up-the-middle approach. What about getting acclimated to a new city?

Van Slyke: Well, there is a lot of traffic for sure. That takes a lot of getting used to. It can be a headache. But overall the weather is great, the people are friendly, there are a lot of great places to eat. It has been real good so far. When you do get a break, is there anything in particular you are looking forward to doing in L.A.?

Van Slyke: I think my wife and I would like to go see a TV show taping or something. Maybe something like the Conan O'Brien or the Ellen show. We'll see. And how does your wife like it in Southern California?

Van Slyke: She loves it. She has been a real trooper the last few years. Lots of traveling to little cities in the Minor Leagues. I could be gone on a 10-day bus trip, and she is back at our place by herself. It is good to be here and I am around some friends who I came up with, especially guys like Clayton Kershaw and Josh Lindblom. I think this is good for her, too.

Jeff Moeller is a freelance writer based in Los Angeles.