Down on the Farm – Puig Hits First Cal League Home Run as Quakes Take Over Wild Card Lead

A great pitching performance by Garrett Gould and Yasiel Puig’s first Cal League home run helped the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes to a 4-2 victory over the High Desert Mavericks (Mariners) on Tuesday night at The Epicenter. With the win and a loss by the Lake Elsinore Storm (Padres), the Quakes are now in sole possession of the final Wild Card berth with only six games remaining.


The Mavs got on the board in the top of the first inning on a solo home run by second baseman Steven Proscia but Gould was able to retire former teammate Leon Landry and catcher John Hicks without further damage.

In the bottom of the first and with two outs, Puig launched a solo shot over the left field wall to tie the score at 1-1. The Quakes added single runs in the second and third innings and the Mavericks tacked on a run in the 6th to make the score 3-2. The Quakes added a huge insurance run in the bottom of the 8th to take a 4-2 lead and the eventual final score.

Gould allowed both runs (1 earned) on 5 hits while striking out 4 and allowing no walks in his six innings of work. He was relieved by left-hander Michael Thomas, who allowed only one hit with a strikeout in two innings. Quakes closer Eric Eadington pitched a scoreless 9th to pick up his 21st save of the season.

In addition to his first home run as a member of the Quakes, Puig also had a single to go 2 for 4 on the night. Since his August 14th promotion from the Arizona Rookie League, Puig is hitting .386 (17 for  44) with 4 RBIs. Quakes left fielder Austin Gallagher continued swinging a hot bat going 3 for 4 with two doubles and a RBI. Third baseman Pedro Baez also went 3 for 4 with a double and a RBI.

Author’s Note:

After videoing Puig’s first Cal League home run, I decided to walk out of the Epicenter to check the area beyond the left field wall where Puig’s ball had landed. Sure enough, there it was. I offered to give it to him but he did not want it. Yasiel was kind enough to sign it for me:

Yasiel Puig’s first Cal League home run ball.



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10 Responses to “Down on the Farm – Puig Hits First Cal League Home Run as Quakes Take Over Wild Card Lead”

  1. ebbetsfld says:

    Where was everybody? They’re battling for a playoff spot and can’t draw a crowd. Maybe it’s because school is back in session?

  2. KSparkuhl says:

    You mean, “Yasiel Puig’s First Cal League Home Run TROT”. I saw him hit the ball, but I didn’t see no darn home run! 8)

    • Ron Cervenka says:

      Sorry to disappoint you, Kevin, but it’s kind of hard to get all of the camera angles with one guy with one handheld camera from the third base side. The guys in the truck and the other 15 cameramen didn’t show up. I guess my YouTube days are over after only 4 videos.

      • KSparkuhl says:

        LOL! It’s all good! Great camera work… even if from a lone cameraman. I still don’t understand why nobody would go after his first Cal League homer and not pick it up? How long was it after he hit it when you found the ball? Puig’s first Cal League homer trot on video and still gets the home run ball! Amazing… you’re leading a charmed life my friend!!

  3. Ron Cervenka says:

    This was the smallest crowd I have seen at the Epicenter this season, ebbetsfld. However, the small crowd allowed me to get Puig’s HR – that and the fact that there was no softball game going on at the field nearest the left field wall.

    I was sitting with Mark Stone filming Puig and shot the video of his first Cal League “…home run trot.” After I stopped the video, I said to Stoney “I wonder if anyone went after that ball?” I decided to go have a look. I had to walk all the way over to the main entrance. I asked the usher if I could go look for Puig’s first HR ball and the guy said go ahead but that ball was probably long gone, so I did.

    It took me three minutes to walk around the outside of the stadium to the service road that runs along the wall. This area it like a forest with tall pine trees (to keep HR balls from hitting the buildings next door to the park). There is a second wall past the trees and I gave a quick look for the first HR ball by the Mavs player but he had hit it so hard that it undoubtedly cleared the second wall. I continued walking to where Puig’s ball had cleared the wall and it was laying in the pine needles next to the service road.

    I was in absolute awe that it was still there. I picked it up and noticed immediately that it was an actual game used ball. I also knew that all BP HR balls are picked up after BP, so there was absolutely no doubt that it was Puig’s ball.

    From the time that he hit it to the time that I got it was probably 5 minutes. It truly was a miracle and definitely meant to be.

    And now you know………….. the rest of the story.

    Good day.

    • thinkblue55 says:

      The crowd was weak because Monday and Tuesday are always weak crowds. You can get in free if you bring 10 cans or bottles to recycle but still never draw over 2000. As for it being a home run I can vouch that it went out… that’s me on the field taking photos as Puig crosses the plate. Reason nobody went after it is if you leave you can’t always get back in. Plus you have to walk along the side of the building past the employee parking in into the ‘forest’ as you mentioned.

      Glad you were able to get it. Yasiel is pretty good at signing for fans. He signs before and after games for atleast 5 minutes.

      Appreciate the site and if you are out again tonight say hi if you see me walking around.

    • KSparkuhl says:

      Amazing… you rock, 53!

      • Ron Cervenka says:

        How’s that saying go – I’d rather be lucky than good. 🙂

        • Bluenose Dodger says:

          That is amazing. I always say it is better to be lucky than rich when something like that happens. Most people here don’t seem to share that sentiment.

          • Ron Cervenka says:

            I’m definitely not rich… but I DO have Yasiel Puig’s first Cal League home run ball. 🙂

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