Fernando Tatis Jr. showed impeccable timing in his two-home-run game Friday night.
The Padres shortstop went deep in consecutive at-bats against Clayton Kershaw during a 6-1 San Diego victory, but even better than the “what” was the “when”: Tatis did it on the 22nd anniversary of his father hitting two grand slams in the same inning.
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And the “where” was pretty great, too: The Tatises both did their thing at Dodger Stadium.
Oh, and did we mention that the younger Tatis wears 23, his pops’ old number? Yep, two 23s doing special things on the 23rd.
The elder Tatis made baseball history April 23, 1999, with back-to-back slams in the third inning against LA right-hander Chan Ho Park for the Cardinals. His son homered to almost the same areas of the stadium off Kershaw.
Dad has son beat eight RBIs to two as both of Junior’s big flies were solo shots, but that’s a minor quibble with such a major fun moment.
“Me playing today on this field and doing, not what he did but something close, it just means a lot for me and for my family,” the younger Tatis told MLB Network in a postgame interview.
Tatis was three months old when his dad hit the two slams, but of course he learned all about what happened. He knew before the game that he was about to play in the same park on the anniversary.
“It is a special day but we didn’t talk about it, probably because we both know about baseball, we don’t want to jinx it,” he said. “What can I say? We’re just glad it happened.”
And to hear Tatis tell it, his own home-run story will be an indelible chapter in the family history.
“It’s definitely something me and my family will never forget, something that we’re definitely going to take to the grave,” he said.