Last night was an amazing night for so many reasons, but at the forefront was Juan Uribe and his three home runs as the Dodgers beat the Diamondbacks 8-1.
2013 has been a comeback year for Uribe, who is in the last year of his three-year deal that saw him hit .204 and .191 in the previous two seasons. Former Dodger Luis Cruz started the year as the incumbent starting third baseman after he hit so well down the stretch last season, but Uribe’s emergence led to Cruz being designated for assignment.
After last night’s game, Don Mattingly talked to Mark Saxson of ESPNLA.com about how impressed he was with how Uribe handled things:
The one thing about Juan: He always, always, always played quality third base. The thing that opened our eyes was how good a teammate he was last year. Luis was here tearing it up and the darling of L.A. last year for a period of time, and Juan was a really good teammate. He gained a lot of respect in that clubhouse.
With his three home run night last night, Uribe is now hitting .279 with 10 home runs and 44 RBIs and is putting together a strong case for a Gold Glove at third base.
Even when the Dodgers brought in Michael Young to back him up and provide another utility player, Uribe was on board as he was all about making the team stronger.
In a sight that nobody thought was possible, Uribe received a curtain call from the Dodger Stadium crowd and talked to Saxson about how he felt:
Uribe admitted the curtain call he received from more than 50,000 fans Monday was an emotional moment for him. I always wanted to be a person who has respect and shows that I care and have a good heart, Uribe said. Good or bad, you still have to be the same person.
Uribe celebrated his home runs with Hanley Ramirez and Yasiel Puig as he’s been given the nickname of “monkey” and he’s become one of the players favorites in the clubhouse.
In case you missed it, be sure to find out more about the near deal for Alexander Guerrero!