ATLANTA -- Before coming to SunTrust Park for Thursday night's game, Braves outfielder Lane Adams went to lunch to surprise his two young nieces, who had accompanied his mother on the drive from Oklahoma to Atlanta.
A few hours later, Adams created another surprise that exceeded the dreams he has had since first breaking into the professional baseball ranks as a 13th-round pick of the Royals in 2009. The 27-year-old journeyman caused some jaws to drop when he drilled his first Major League home run into the second deck in left field during an eight-run fifth inning that propelled the Braves to a 12-11 win over the Giants.
"Looking back at it, it's probably better than I ever thought," Adams said. "I imagined it would be a great feeling. But once it happens, it's even better than you imagined."
Adams' no-doubt shot off Bryan Morris traveled 408 feet with a 107-mph exit velocity, per Statcast™.
"I hit it pretty well," Adams said with shy smile. "I kind of knew when I hit it."
The Braves sent 13 batters to the plate and recorded nine hits during the fifth-inning eruption. This marked the first time they scored eight runs in an inning since April 19, 2011, when they tallied eight in the ninth against the Dodgers. The hit total was their highest in an inning since April 7, 2004.
Adams will be the one contributor who will draw the best memory from the explosive frame. He has totaled 830 Minor League games with four organizations over the past nine seasons. Before the Braves called him up for the first of what is now his second big league stint of the season, his only Major League experience came courtesy of six games with the 2014 Royals.
"It's a grind getting up here," Adams said. "They say staying here is the hardest part. That's 100 percent true. I'm just taking it day by day and trying to make the most of the opportunity the Braves have given me."