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Tapia sets Rox record on inside-the-park HR

@harding_at_mlb
April 21, 2019

DENVER -- Rockies outfielder Raimel Tapia entered Saturday night as the only player in the National League with more than one triple (he has three) this season. But in the second inning of Saturday night’s 8-5 loss to the Phillies, he went one base farther. On the first pitch of

DENVER -- Rockies outfielder Raimel Tapia entered Saturday night as the only player in the National League with more than one triple (he has three) this season. But in the second inning of Saturday night’s 8-5 loss to the Phillies, he went one base farther.

On the first pitch of the frame from Phillies starting pitcher Aaron Nola, Tapia turned a drive high off the center-field wall into an inside-the-park home run. Charlie Blackmon led off the first inning with a traditional homer.

Tapia’s deep shot bounced high off the wall and past Phillies center fielder Roman Quinn. Third-base coach Stu Cole didn’t hesitate to send Tapia, who beat a close throw that catcher J.T. Realmuto didn't cleanly haul in.

“As I was rounding second, I noticed Stu waving me home, so at that point, I thought I had a chance,” Tapia said in Spanish through a translator.

The trip around the bases took Tapia 15.38 seconds, which is fastest of the Rockies’ three inside-the-park homers since Statcast began tracking such feats in 2015.

“I’m grateful,” he said. “Not a lot of players get a chance to experience that. I was happy I was a part of that. A lot of players spend a lot of time in the big leagues and never get a chance to do it.”

It was the 18th inside-the-park homer in Rockies history and the first since Blackmon’s on July 16, 2017, against the Mets at Citi Field. On that one, Mets outfielders and Blackmon, himself, thought the ball cleared the wall (it did), but umpires ruled it didn’t, and there was no need for replay because of the play’s result.

Thomas Harding has covered the Rockies since 2000, and for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb and like his Facebook page.