Iannetta has 'ton of fun' with slam, 8-RBI night
PHOENIX -- Chris Iannetta had never received a standing ovation before, so when the 34,588 fans at Chase Field beckoned for him to return to the top step of the home dugout after his grand slam on Friday night, it was a bit of an out-of-body experience.
"I wasn't even paying attention," Iannetta said. "Luckily it was over before I even knew what was happening. It was an awkward feeling."
Grand slams mean 40% off pizza
Iannetta went 3-for-4 with two home runs and eight RBIs in a 13-11 win over the Marlins. He came one RBI short of matching Erubiel Durazo for the single-game franchise record, and he became the only player in the Majors this season to drive in seven or more runs in multiple games. It took a shove from David Peralta to get him out of the dugout for a curtain call, but even while trying to downplay the moment, the soft-spoken D-backs catcher couldn't keep the smile off his face.
"It was fun," Iannetta said. "It was a ton of fun."
The win also trimmed the D-backs' magic number to clinch a National League Wild Card spot to two.
With the D-backs trailing, 9-8, Iannetta launched a grand slam off of Dustin McGowan in the 6th to give Arizona a three-run lead. The D-backs found themselves in a back-and-forth slugfest on Friday, and Iannetta's grand slam turned out to be the final blow.
"Just a sinker up in the middle," Iannetta said. "It was a situation where they don't wanna walk anybody right there. I was just trying to get a pitch over the plate that I could drive to the outfield and hopefully score a run. Bases loaded and one out, you hopefully can at least get one, and I was able to get the barrell to it."
The offensive fireworks started early, as Marcell Ozuna smashed his 35th homer of the year in the first inning to give Miami a 2-0 lead, but Iannetta answered back with a three-run blast in the bottom of the frame.
Christian Walker and J.D. Martinez each added solo blasts during the game, and even starting pitcher Zack Greinke got in on the scoring with an RBI double in the second.
Iannetta entered the night hitting .295 in September, and is now hitting .333 on the month. He was acquired before the season to form a potent defensive catching trifecta alongside Jeff Mathis and Chris Herrmann, but he has also chipped in 16 homers on the year.
"First of all, there's some great leadership qualities behind the plate," Arizona manager Torey Lovullo said. "[Iannetta] has worked very well with pitchers throughout the course of the season. Offensively, we knew there was some great potential in there. He'd had some good years -- some good offensive years. With the combination of he and two other catchers, and all of them being well-rested, there was a chance he could do something like this. It's been an incredible run for him. Numbers-wise, offensively, it's been a very productive year."