It’s worth revisiting Michael Lorenzen’s emotional return to the Reds on Friday night. If you haven’t seen it yet, watch:
— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) August 20, 2016
Lorenzen had been on the bereavement list after the loss of his father earlier in the week. He entered the game in the top of the seventh with two Dodgers on base, and proceeded to retire Josh Reddick and Adrian Gonzalez to snuff out the rally.
Mark Sheldon has a nice little story on the evening, and you should really go read it, as he has a number of good quotes. Such as this one:
“Even after the third out of my first inning I threw, I had to go back into the bathroom because I broke down,” Lorenzen said. “There were some teammates back there that were able to help me out. I was able to go out and hit.”
Yes, he was able to go out and hit, lining a ball over the right-center field fence for a three-run homer, the first of his career. As he crossed home plate, he was clearly having difficulty containing his emotions. Same with his teammates in the dugout, including catcher Ramon Cabrera, who embraced Lorenzen:
“We’re pretty close,” Cabrera said. “I saw him running the bases and I cried. I just wanted to stay back and be the last person to give him a hug. I said, ‘You’re OK, you’re doing good.’ It was very special. I know how hard it is. That kind of moment, you just give him a hug and say something. I wanted him to relax after that.”
A few seconds later, a raucous Great American Ball Park crowd convinced Lorenzen to step back out of the dugout for a well-deserved curtain call.
This has been a season to forget in many ways, but that moment will be one to remember.