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SD@COL: Grandal slugs first two career home runs

DENVER -- After his postgame radio interview, Yasmani Grandal was led through the third-base dugout and into the visitors' clubhouse, which was deserted -- sparking a suspicion that something was brewing.

Into the showers Grandal went, led by backup catcher John Baker, where his hiding teammates immediately bombarded him with the works: shaving cream, all over his body, coke, water and beer poured on his head.

Grandal licked his lips and tasted Bud Light, but later on said" "I would have liked Coors better."

Of course he would. Grandal entered rarefied air on Saturday night, cranking out home runs for his first two hits -- each from different sides of the plate -- as the Padres posted an 8-4 win over the Rockies in front of a sellout crowd of 48,169 at Coors Field.

According to Elias Sports Bureau, Grandal is the first player in Major League history to homer from both sides of the plate for his first career hits in the same game.

"I can't describe how remarkable this is," said Grandal, his hair wet with shaving cream and the stench of a fraternity house wafting through the clubhouse. "To hit two homers in my first two hits is incredible."

Grandal was called up Saturday afternoon to replace struggling catcher Nick Hundley on the Padres' 25-man roster -- and, at least for one night, appears like he's here to stay. Manager Bud Black, wasn't sure if he had ever seen anything quite like it.

"It's remarkable," Black said. "This has to rank up there with some of the best starts. It was very impressive."

Grandal trotted back to the dugout after a fourth-inning solo shot off Rockies starter Christian Friedrich -- the first of his two homers that broke a scoreless tie -- where Baker greeted him.

"Welcome to the club," Baker said.

Baker, too, had homered for his first career hit in 2008. In the sixth inning, Grandal put the Padres up, 3-2, with a two-run shot the opposite way off Colorado righty Jeremy Guthrie.

When and if the Hall of Fame comes calling for some mementos of the historic night, Grandal will be more than willing to surrender whatever they want. The catcher has in his possession the first home run ball, but the Padres are working on locating the second, lost in the left-field bleachers.

"If they want my underwear, I'd give it to them," the 23-year-old Grandal said with a smile. "It's the Hall of Fame, I'd give them whatever they ask for."

And color Rockies catcher Wilin Rosario -- who hit a home run of his own in the fifth -- very impressed.

"I'd never seen that guy. The only thing I can tell you is he's strong, like me," Rosario said. "He's got power, too. He's a good hitter. That sometimes happens."

Grandal's night was made sweeter by the fact that the Padres won, setting up the rubber match on Sunday, and that he was behind the plate for it to help starter Edinson Volquez earn his fifth win.

Volquez struck out a season-high eight batters, scattered a season-low three hits in six innings, but also issued six walks, a season high.

"I knew, because I've pitched here a lot, that the ball carries here," said Volquez, who threw a season-high 117 pitches. "I came out pretty good."

San Diego provided ample run support. Shortstop Alexi Amarista joined Grandal in the fun with his own two-homer night -- blasting the second and third homers of his career and recording four RBIs. Amarista entered the game with eight RBIs on the season.

"The guy is swinging the bat well," Black said. "He got a couple of pitches in his zone, and he didn't miss them."

A fan of Rockies stars Todd Helton and Jason Giambi, Grandal knew balls would be flying at Coors Field.

"I've heard about this park, played some Minors games at Colorado Springs, and I've seen the games on TV, too," Grandal said.

But never in his wildest dreams could Grandal have imagined this kind of night, one of the best offensive showcases Coors Field has seen in its 18 years of existence.

"Just getting the call-up was something I was really excited about," Grandal said. "But this is indescribable."

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