Matt Adams had just doubled to center field in the top of the fourth inning Saturday night and scored against Las Vegas.
But when the No. 3 hitter for the Memphis Cardinals, the Class AAA affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals took his first base spot in the bottom of the inning, manager Ron "Pop" Warner pulled him out of the game.
It was for a good reason.
The 23-year-old Philipsburg-Osceola graduate, who was the 699th pick in the 23rd round of the 2009 amateur draft out of Slippery Rock University, had been called up to the big club in St. Louis.
"My reaction was I was amazed, and I was so excited," Adams said before Sunday night's ESPN-televised game with the Los Angeles Dodgers. "I am so excited."
The 6-foot-3 1/2, 255-pounder was likely a little more excited after he started at first base and went 2-for-4 and scored a run in Sunday night's 6-5 loss to the Dodgers as the No. 7 hitter.
The left-handed Adams hit the first pitch thrown to him from the Dodgers' Chad Billingsley into center field for a single in the second inning, and he got to keep the ball. In the fourth, he was robbed of a hit by first baseman James Loney, who made a diving stop of a ground ball throw to Billingsley.
"He's shown a lot of maturity as a hitter," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny told ESPN's Buster Olney in the fourth inning.
In the sixth, he hit a dying quail into short center field for a single, and Yadier Molina was thrown out on a questionable call at third. Adams, however, scored from third on a Rafael Furcal looping single into center. In the eighth, he bounced out to second after hitting a screaming foul ball in the at-bat that had teammates ducking out of the way in the dugout.
In the field, he started a 3-6-1 double play in the first inning.
"Hopefully, I can make the most of my opportunities," Adams told mlb.com before the game. "I've been swinging well, and I've felt good at the plate. I am swinging at better pitches, and I started laying off pitches down, and I'm waiting for pitches up more."
Matt's dad, Jamie, and mom, Lisa, were watching his game from home Saturday night when he was pulled out of the game.
"When he came in to score, he was holding the back of leg, and I thought he was hurt," Jamie Adams said. "When he came out to warm up the infielders, they called the catcher and Matt over to the dugout. It was about 45 minutes later Matt called, and I asked 'Are you okay buddy?' He said, "I have to pack my bags because I'm going to Los Angeles.
"I didn't sleep all night. My wife and I didn't get a wink of sleep."
Adams was called up because the Cardinals' starting first baseman, Lance Berkman, injured his right knee catching a ball during a 6-0 loss to the Dodgers on Saturday night. ESPN reported that Berkman's injury could be a torn ACL.
While he has been an early invitee to the Cardinals' spring training the last two years, Adams wasn't expected to get the call this soon, even after Albert Pujols left the Cardinals to go to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in the biggest free-agent signing of the offseason.
But Adams has been tearing up minor-league pitching at every level. This season for Memphis, he was batting .340 to go with nine home runs and 27 RBIs. Last year at Class AA Springfield, he hit 32 home runs, knocked in 101 runs, hit .300 and was named the Texas League Player of the Year.
"He was just the best hitter I've been around," said Altoona Curve catcher Charlie Cutler, who played with Adams at Springfield. "You know his numbers, and he missed part of the season [with an injury] too. So, he's just a great hitter and a great teammate, and he does things right and is a hard worker. He just acted like a normal guy and not a guy that was having the best season in all of the minor leagues."
In 2010, playing in Davenport, Iowa, he led the Midwest League in slugging percentage (.541) and RBIs (88), tied for second in home runs with 22, tied for third in doubles with 41 and hit .310.
"He's a great kid, and he deserves every bit of this," Adams' offseason hitting coach Justin Hazelton said. "He's put a lot of time into it. As good as he is, he's really worked hard to do it. I think it's just an awesome thing for our area."
"He's worked really hard from little league on up," Jamie Adams said. "His goal was to make it to the big leagues. He's going to be a little shell-shocked when he walks out at Dodger Stadium on national television.
"I didn't know when for sure it was going to happen. You don't wish anybody gets hurt. It's a dream for the parents and the kid playing the game. The ultimate dream is getting to the big leagues."
Philipsburg's Keno Beezer, who works for the Major League Scouting Bureau and is a local baseball historian, said Adams is the third player from Philipsburg to make the major leagues, but he's the first since Alf Jones made the Philadelphia Athletics roster in 1930. Jones didn't play in a game, though.
Before that, it was Tom Philips, whose family founded the town of Philipsburg. Beezer said Philips played in the 1890s, possibly with the Cubs, and he played in a few games. Since then, Bo Sankey, who played five seasons in the Cardinals' organization (his last year being 1970), was the P-O player who came the closest to getting the call, making it as high as Class AA.
"It sure didn't surprise me," Beezer said of Adams' call-up. "It was only a matter of time. If the Cardinals didn't want to put him on their 40-man roster, somebody would have. He hit everywhere he went."
News of his call-up has had Philipsburg and the surrounding communities excited as word spread over Facebook, Twitter and team web sites. Facebook statuses and tweets across Twitter by P-O grads Sunday night were all about Adams.
"This is great," Beezer said. "They were announcing in churches he didn't even go to that he got called up. He worked hard and has great hand-eye coordination. The family did a great job supporting him."
"When he first started, he was a little homesick," Jamie Adams said. "He was ready to throw the towel in, and now he's in the big leagues. I can't express how great the local towns like Philipsburg, Altoona and have been. Our home phone hasn't stopped ringing all day. I'm proud of whe whole town of Philipsburg."
The Mirror's Cory Giger contributed to this report.