San Diego Padres relief pitcher Daniel Camarena did the improbable Thursday night against the Washington Nationals – hitting a grand slam against one of baseball’s top pitchers.
Camarena was making his second career home plate appearance when he faced Max Scherzer. Trent Grisham, Eric Hosmer and Wil Myers were on base in the fourth inning when Camarena threw the ball to right field.
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Camarena’s home run was part of a nine-point comeback that ended in a 9-8 win for the Padres.
“Oh my God, I passed out,” the rookie said of his home run. “I hit first base and then all of a sudden I noticed the lights were flashing in the stadium and that’s when it hit, like, Oh my god I just hit a home run. Not just that, a grand slam. “
Camarena was put in the game in the fourth inning for Yu Darvish. He said he was just trying to find some space between the outfielder, “especially against Max like it’s hard to do so I was just trying with whatever I had to put a ball in play. . “
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He became the second pitcher in MLB history whose first hit was a grand slam. The first was Bill Duggleby who made it for the Philadelphia Phillies on April 21, 1898.
He was the first relief pitcher to hit a grand slam since Don Robinson did it for the Pittsburgh Pirates on September 12, 1985, and was the first Padres player to win a grand slam for his first hit. The last player to win a grand slam for his first hit was San Francisco Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford.
“Down 8-0 against Max Scherzer, our ace out of the game, we get a grand slam from a pitcher who was just called up today, probably at the top,” said Padres manager Jayce Tingler. “It’s special and that’s why I’m convinced we’re going to do special things, just because of the way we fight. We don’t lie down, we just keep going. “
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San Diego drops to 52-38 with the win and the Nationals drop to 42-44.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.