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Five years ago today: Paul Goldschmidt's first ever home-run as a Diamondback

It was the inaugural game at Salt River Fields. Aaron Heilman started for the Arizona Diamondbacks against the Colorado Rockies. And Paul Goldschmidt had his first ever home-run in a Diamondbacks uniform. Of course, it was a game-tying blast with two out in the ninth!

It wasn't quite Goldie's first plate appearance as a Diamondback. He had appeared precisely once the previous spring, though hadn't mustered an official at-bat! there. But the legend which was Goldie was already being forged, as he had hit 35 home-runs for High-A Visalia in the 2010 campaign, batting .314 and driving in 108 runs. That was enough to get him an invite to the big-league camp. He had struck out in the Cactus League opener the previous day against the Giants in Scottsdale - pinch-hitting for starting first-baseman Brandon Allen (remember him?). But he was still looking for his first start, coming into this one as a replacement for third-baseman Geoff Blum.

Despite being tied at one after five, this wasn't a well-pitched game, as both bullpens melted down over the remainder of the game. Juan Gutierrez and Micah Owings combined to allow six earned runs in 1.1 innings of work, and give Colorado what seemed like an unassailable five-run lead going into the bottom of the ninth. However, Brandon Allen (playing LF) walked with one out, some guy called A.J. Pollock singled - whatever happened to him? - Marc Krauss got an RBI single and Ryan Roberts also walked, loading the bases to bring the tying ruin to the plate. Tony Abreu made the second out, with a sac fly - that just set the stage for Paul Goldschmidt.

As he has done so many times since, to the point where we virtually expect the exceptional, Goldschmidt delivered, clubbing a three-run homer onto the berm in left-center and send the game into extra innings. Unfortunately, his heroics didn't end in a victory, or even the indecisive outcome of a spring training tie - Daniel Stange allowed a run in the tenth and took the loss, the Rockies prevailing by a final score of 8-7. But it was the first time many D-backs fans will have heard the name Paul Goldschmidt, though even after this, few would probably have had him appearing in the All-Star game less than 2½ years later.

If you want to look back on more from the game, here's the full report of Mrs SnakePit and my's first-ever trip to Salt River Fields, and our first time watching Goldschmidt in person.