Add another South Florida athlete to the record books.
J.D. Martinez, the power-hitter from Flanagan High and Nova Southeastern University, tied a major-league record by hitting four home runs for the Arizona Diamondbacks on Monday night.
Martinez told MLB.com that his only thought when he stepped to the plate at Dodger Stadium in the top of the ninth with the change to hit No. 4 was how close he had come before.
In 2015, Martinez flew out at Yankee Stadium and ended that game with three home runs.
On Monday night, he didn’t squander his second chance at the record book and unloaded on a 1-0 delivery from Wilmer Font into the southern California night to put the finishing touches on the D-Backs’ 13-0 victory over their rivals.
“I came up and I was like, ‘just go up here and try to have a good at-bat’,” Martinez told reporters as reported by MLB.com.
“Just keep doing what you've been doing all day. You know what, if it's meant to be, it's meant to be. It's going to happen. There's no point in trying to force it. Just go up there and have a good at-bat.”
Martinez’s power came in a flurry.
After striking out in his first time to the plate, Martinez connected off Rich Hill with a runner on in the fourth to get his record night going.
Martinez then hit home runs in the seventh, eighth and ninth innings.
“It’s a blessing,” he told reporters.
Martinez became the 18th player in MLB history to hit four home runs in a game and the second this season as Scooter Gennett of the Reds did it against St. Louis on June 6.
Others, besides Gennett, to hit four homers in a single game include Willie Mays, Mike Schmidt and Lou Gehrig.
When No. 4 went out?
“It's kind of one of those things where you're kind of laughing about it,” Martinez said. “Was I shocked? No. Going up there and hitting it, it didn't really shock me. I was just happy it went over.”
Martinez graduated from Flanagan High School in Pembroke Pines and went to NSU after being drafted by the Twins.
He started his career with the Astros and became an All-Star with the Tigers. Martinez was acquired by the Diamondbacks earlier this season and has 18 of his 34 home runs this season since leaving Detroit.