Exactly three years ago, on July 23, 2010, the Arizona Diamondbacks lost to the San Francisco Giants (sound familiar?) by a score of 7-4. The game itself, however, was not the storyline. D-Backs second baseman at the time, Kelly Johnson hit for the cycle that day, going 4-for-4 at the plate while driving in three runs and scoring two.
Jul 3, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Tampa Bay Rays left fielder Kelly Johnson (2) bats during the fourth inning against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
He slugged a solo home run in the first inning, a ground-rule double in the fifth, a triple in the sixth and capped it off with a single in the eighth.
The Diamondbacks, however, dropped to 37-60 after that game, and finished the season with an embarrassing record of 65-97, which was good for last place in the National League West, and the third worst overall record in Major League Baseball.
One year and one month after Johnson’s historic day, on August 23, 2011, he was traded to the Toronto Blue Jays in exchange for second baseman Aaron Hill and shortstop John McDonald. Currently, Hill is the starting second baseman for the Snakes while McDonald was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates this past March.
Both Johnson, now a left fielder for the Tampa Bay Rays, and the Diamondbacks are in position to reach the postseason. Arizona, however, has been struggling of late and now sit 1/2 game behind the Los Angeles Dodgers for first place in the N.L. West. Meanwhile, Johnson and his team are threatening the first place Boston Red Sox in the American League East, and are just 1/2 game back. They have won six in a row, and nine out of their last ten games.