There’s only one first major league at-bat, and Eddie Rosario could not have trumpeted his arrival to the big leagues any more loudly.
With his family in the stands and fans curious to see if he’s the real deal, Rosario took a rip at the first pitch he saw from Oakland lefthander Scott Kazmir. It landed in the left field stands for a home run — and landed Rosario in the record books.
Rosario became the 115th player to hit a home run on his first major league at-bat and the 109th to do it in his first plate appearance. But Rosario also is in that exclusive group of 29 players who swung at the first pitch they saw in the majors and hit a home run.
The blast electrified the Twins, who scored four runs in the inning and went on to a 13-0 victory at Target Field on Wednesday night, their sixth win in their past seven games.
“It was an awesome moment,” said Rosario, who was called up from Class AAA Rochester on Monday but didn’t play until Wednesday. “First at-bat. First pitch.”
Rosario is the first player to do it since Pittsburgh’s Starling Marte on July 26, 2012.
Rosario’s family, which included his father, Eddie Sr., and his mother, Maria, all had their smartphones out to record the moment. The group rose from their seats as the ball sailed into the stands and cheered wildly as Rosario circled the bases.
As Rosario floated around the bases while in dreamland, Brian Dozier and Torii Hunter looked at each other, then looked at their teammates and put up the stop sign. The dugout didn’t move as Rosario returned. They gave him the silent treatment for a few moments before rushing to him to slap hands.
“After everyone congratulates him, the kid gets it,” said Twins righthander Kyle Gibson. “He sits down on the bench and the only thing he said was, ‘Man, what a moment.’ That’s exactly it.”
And Rosario had a good time with the silent treatment.
“I know the guys are going to try to do something,” he said. “That’s the way it is.”
Rosario is the sixth Twin to hit a home run in his first major league at-bat, joining Rick Renick (1968), Dave McKay (1975), Gary Gaetti (1981), Andre David (1984) and Luke Hughes (2010). He’s the only Twin to do it on the first pitch.
That was the first run of the four-run third inning for the Twins, which was a feat in itself because Kazmir entered the game 5-0 with a 2.68 ERA in his past seven starts against the Twins. And the Twins poured it on.
Eduardo Escobar hit a two-run homer in the sixth. The Twins scored four runs in the seventh, two on an Escobar double. Then Kennys Vargas blasted a three-run homer in the eighth as the Twins won by at least 10 runs for the third time in a week.
Gibson ran his scoreless-innings streak to 17 but battled control and was lifted after six innings and 104 pitches. And Shane Robinson ended the game by dashing from left-center to right-center with a splendid diving catch.
A game full of superlatives but all outdone by Rosario, who maxed out his first-ever major league at-bat.
“Everyone is elated for Eddie,” Twins manager Paul Molitor said. “We had a nice little celebration after the game. It’s well-deserved.’’