On Thursday afternoon, Giants rookie Kelby Tomlinson lived out the dream of every young boy playing baseball in the backyard.
In the bottom of the eighth inning of the Giants' 9-1 win over the Chicago Cubs on Thursday, Tomlinson stepped up to the plate with the bases loaded still searching for his first big-league home run after 51 at-bats with the Giants this season.
He had whacked a pair of doubles and triples, but still had yet to go long fly.
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That all changed on a 1-2 off-speed pitch from Cubs reliever James Russell.
"He threw [the curveball] to me earlier in the at-bat on the first pitch, and he fooled me on it, so I had a feeling he might come back to it at some point," Tomlinson said after the game, per MLB.com. "That was the pitch I got."
Tomlinson belted Russell's low-and-inside offering into the left-field bleachers, creating an unforgettable moment for him and the Giants.
"It was pretty crazy," Tomlinson said. "When you play in the yard, you don't just dream of hitting a base hit. You dream of it being a home run -- a grand slam -- so it was kind of surreal when you actually do it."
As he rounded the bases, the usually stone-faced Tomlinson donned an ear-to-ear grin that he couldn't contain. The same was true when he was given an ovation by the AT&T Park faithful upon running out to his position the following half-inning.
"I've never experienced anything like that, and it was something special," the rookie second baseman said. "Usually, during the game, I'm pretty locked in and don't smile too much, but I don't think I could get a smile off my face during that."
Tomlinson wasn't the only one who reveled in the special moment.
Teammate and fellow rookie Matt Duffy and the rest of the Giants dugout were ecstatic for him.
"I was so happy for him," Duffy said. "The standing ovation gave me freaking chills. He's just such a good kid. For him to do that was pretty sweet."
"People sometimes outside the baseball world don't know how big a moment this is," manager Bruce Bochy said. "For Kelby, it's a memory he'll never forget."
Oddly enough, Tomlinson isn't the only Giants player to hit a grand slam for his first major-league home run. MLB.com notes that shortstop Brandon Crawford achieved the feat as well in 2011.