“Even a blind squirrel finds a nut” the saying goes. That adage proved true Saturday night as Bartolo Colon launched his first career home run against the Padres James Shields to give his team a 4-0 lead at the time. His teammates had some fun with him as well, emptying out of the dugout as he came back (eventually) before rushing out of the tunnel to give him his proper hero’s welcome.
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Here’s footage of the historic event:
The drive actually looks to land in the second level of the Western Metal Supply Building, so it didn’t exactly just squeak out. For context, Bartolo has looked pretty bad at the plate in his career, including this at-bat:
The announcers joked that this was one of the biggest moments in baseball history and also wondered if he was running his fastest on his home run trot. It might’ve been, evidenced by his blazing fast speed on a double he hit two years ago
The Padres would strike back with Jon Jay hitting a three run home to pull within 1 as of this writing through six innings. Colon is 42 years old and turns 43 on May 24th of this year. His home run was the first hit of this season in 9 at-bats. Last season he set a career high with 8 hits in 58 at-bats and even had 4 RBI to help his own cause.
Playing baseball is a serious business – but at its core it is a fun game. Bartolo came up in the American League with the Indians back in 1998 and has never been a duel threat at the plate like Madison Bumgarner or Zack Greinke. Pitching is his specialty and he has carved out a long career doing so. Yet watching him hit and seeing his home run is a fun memory that fans of any team can enjoy. We just hope here at FriarsOnBase the Padres can come back to win the game. It would be much better for this home run to be a footnote than the difference in the outcome.