Armed with his fantastic set of, uh, arms, Reds reliever Michael Lorenzen nudged the Phillies’ wild card dreams further out of reach in an 8-5 win Wednesday night, and became the second player in major league history to hit a home run, play a position in the field and earn the win in the same game. The first was none other than Babe Ruth, in 1921.
Did Lorenzen pitch especially well? Ah, hmm, no, not really. He entered the game in the seventh inning to replace Robert Stephenson, the Reds ahead 5-4, and quickly gave up a game-tying home run to Jay Bruce.
But he stayed in through the next inning (the Reds climbed back to 6-5) and in the bottom of the eighth, hit his own two-run homer to give the Reds an 8-5 lead. He was redeployed to center field in the ninth, capping off this nice little tour of the thrills baseball has to offer.
Per MLB Stats, since he entered the league in 2015, Lorenzen has seven home runs, the second-most for a pitcher in that timespan after Madison Bumgarner at 12.
Shohei Ohtani is trembling! Lorenzen is not. “To me, it’s just a funny little stat, like a baseball stat,” he said postgame. “I’m not too into the statistics like that, but I know for a lot of people it means a lot.”