Beyond the Monster: Travis Shaw’s First Career Red Sox Home Run

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Beyond the Monster is an ongoing series where we take you back in time and look at moments in Red Sox history.

The Boston Red Sox claimed former infielder Travis Shaw off waivers from the Milwaukee Brewers on Sunday. Shaw returns to Boston after spending the last five seasons with the Brewers and Blue Jays. 


Photo courtesy of Winslow Townson / AP

This season, the 31-year-old Shaw has been nipped with the injury bug. He has spent time on the 60-injured list suffering from a dislocated left shoulder. 


With Shaw returning back to Fenway, it had me reminiscing on his time with the Sox. Shaw was a huge fan favorite and was nicknamed the Mayor of Ding Dong City. 


After earning that name from Barstool’s Jared Carrabis, I wanted to take you back to Shaw’s first ever Red Sox home run.


Plot twist, he hits two homers and the pride of Pawtucket Rusney Castillo also made an appearance. Castillo would drive in three RBIs in the game Shaw would hit his first career homer. 


However, this is a Travis Shaw story not one on Castillo. 


The Mayor was Born


Six years ago, Shaw had an impressive game with the Sox going 4-for-4 and hitting two dongs. 


It was Aug. 1, 2015, the Sox were home playing host to the Tampa Bay Rays. The Red Sox were sitting in last place with 47 wins and 12 games behind the division leading Yankees. 


Fenway Park was packed despite their record, 35,944 were in attendance to see Shaw’s career game. 


The leader of the Joe Kelly Fight Club, Kelly himself was on the bump and was touched up for five earned runs. But his offense stepped up to earn him the win on that 87 degree Saturday afternoon.


4-for-4 


Despite the elevated temperature in the ballpark, it was Shaw’s bat that was a scorcher. In the second inning of the game, up against 1-2 count, Shaw doubled. He would go down the left field line off of Rays starter Matt Moore. 


He would follow his double up with his first career home run. Shaw took a Moore deep to right field and into the seats. 


Please enjoy the call from the legend himself, Don Orsillo. 


 


In the bottom of the fifth, Shaw would single to left field. The rookie was on the verge of hitting for the cycle. 



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Cycle or another Homer?


With only needing a triple for the cycle, Shaw was trying to block out the noise and just focus at the task at hand. Coming into that game, Shaw wasn’t sure if he would even be in the lineup. Then Red Sox third baseman Pablo Sandoval was hurt and Shaw stepped in to fill the void. 


"It's in your head," Shaw said on the possibility of hitting for the cycle after the game. 


"Everybody's talking about it. If you hit the ball in the gap, everybody's like: 'Don't stop running.' I'll take the homer."


In his final at-bat, the triple never came. Instead, Shaw would hit his second career homer. He would crush Rays reliever Kirby Yates deep to centerfield for his second dong of the day. The elated Fenway Park was able to see the birth of Shaw’s amazing nickname. 


The slugging first baseman would also score three runs and walk once. 


The multi-homer game allowed the Sox to defeat the Rays 11-7. The win also saw Boston win their third straight after losing 12 of 14. 


Welcome Home


Shaw now returns to Boston and he’ll get thrown right into a pennant race. The veteran infielder provides depth at first base. A position Chaim Bloom failed to upgrade at the trade deadline. 


Shaw feels healthy and is ready to contribute for the Sox. “Rehab assignment went well the past couple of weeks. Swung the bat well, and feel really good with where I’m at right now health wise,” said Shaw to NESN in an interview. 


It’s always fun to reminisce back on exciting moments in Red Sox history. While Shaw’s multi-homer game isn’t feature in Red Sox lore, it was a special day for the then rookie. He became a fan favorite almost immediately following that Saturday afternoon. 


Welcome back to Ding Dong City. 




Follow Chris on Twitter @chrishenrique


Check out the Red Sox Podcast to be Named Later, the Syndicate’s podcast dedicated solely to the Boston Red Sox and the rest of Major League Baseball. Follow our Red Sox Podcast to be Named Later on Twitter @RedSoxPod_BSS.

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Boston Sports Syndicate: Beyond the Monster: Travis Shaw’s First Career Red Sox Home Run
Beyond the Monster: Travis Shaw’s First Career Red Sox Home Run
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