Final thoughts on Scott Hairston …
Here’s a story I dug up from January of 2008 on Scott Hairston, months after he hit what nearly was one of the biggest home runs in franchise history (Game 163 in Denver). The home run that became a footnote after the whole Matt Holliday incident.
Hairston hit a handful of game-deciding, game-winning and other important home runs. He had 35 of them in 610 at-bats, which is pretty remarkable.
Anyway, here’s a look back at the home run Hairston hit against the Rockies, the one that gave the Padres a brief lead.
In these parts, Padres fans still occasionally joke about how Matt
Holliday still hasn’t touched the plate, even if it pains them greatly
every time they do so.
Maybe that’s because if things had been different that night in
October against Colorado, these same fans might be sharing a laugh over
something more memorable.
Like what easily could have been one of the most significant home runs in the franchise history.
Remember Scott Hairston’s two-run home run off Jorge Julio in
the 13th inning at Coors Field?
Sadly, Hairston’s moment in the sun
lasted about as long as the lead his hit provided that night, as the
Rockies rallied for a 9-8 victory, sending them to the postseason as
Holliday touched or didn’t touch home plate with the winning run.
Hairston, who was at PETCO Park on Saturday for the team’s
third annual Friar Fest, still gets goose bumps when he thinks back to
that home run, not just because what it represented at that very
moment, but for the validation it brought to the 27-year-old.
“I remember as I was running around the bases, I looked in the
dugout and saw everyone looking so happy,” Hairston said. “I just
started thinking then about how two months before that, I was with
“That was very emotional. I just started to reflect on everything. When I got in the dugout … it felt like I was at home.”
Hairston feels the same way today, as he prepares for his first
Spring Training with the Padres after spending parts of seven seasons
in the Diamondbacks organization.
Hairston joined the Padres on July 27 in a trade that sent
Minor League pitcher Leo Rosales to the Diamondbacks, a team the Padres
were battling with for the division title.
The move nearly backfired on the Diamondbacks, proving that
trading within the same division, especially during the thick of a
pennant race, isn’t always, well, prudent.
Hairston got the one thing he struggled to get in Arizona —
consistent playing time and frequent at-bats — and made the best of
them, hitting .287 with eight home runs and 20 RBIs over just 87
More than that was the timing of some of those home runs, the memorable blast off Julio not withstanding.
On Aug. 3, Hairston hit a game-tying, three-run home run in the
eighth inning against the Giants and then a game-winning home run in
the 10th inning.
On Sept. 19, Hairston his a three-run home run with two outs
off Pirates reliever Matt Capps in the ninth inning for a 5-3 victory.