One of the many amazing things to come out of Josh Hamilton’s incredible four home run effort last night was that it marked the second time that one of his teammates had witnessed such an event unfold for his club. Texas Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre was actually hitting in front of Shawn Green in 2002 when he hit four home runs and collected an MLB record 19 total bases.
When asked to compare the two achievements, Beltre said that both players were in a similar zone:
They were both hitting the ball everywhere. They were both completely locked in.
However, Beltre was not in a very similar place last night compared to almost ten years ago. He hits behind Hamilton in the Rangers lineup, not ahead of him, as he did for Green. You might not think that would be much of an issue for Beltre, but it did cause him to hold back on what would’ve been his typical response to such an amazing display from a teammate.
That was my one regret. I didn’t get to enjoy it as much as I might have liked. Who knows what I might have yelled.
Evan Grant, of the Dallas Morning News, informs us of a rather unfortunate microphone pick up from a year ago in which Beltre could be heard loudly approving of a big home run with a commonly used expletive. Grant doesn’t expound on the quote any more than this, but it seems obvious that someone asked Beltre to watch his language in the on deck circle.
The always excellent Texas Rangers blog Baseball Time In Arlington goes a little bit deeper into questioning the implied censorship of Beltre.