Barnhart cherishes first big league homer

Barnhart cherishes first big league homer

CINCINNATI -- Reds rookie catcher Tucker Barnhart had trouble getting to sleep on Thursday night, not because of something that went wrong, but because of something that was very right.

Leading off the fifth inning against the Brewers' Marco Estrada, Barnhart hit a 1-1 pitch for his first Major League home run. It landed in the netting above the right field visitor's bullpen.

"Honestly I sat in my room and my heart was still pounding until about 1 o'clock in the morning," Barnhart said. "I just sat there and watched TV. It really made me think about all the people that have been a part of my career, and all the struggles and grinds I've gone through to get to where I am. It's been a journey."

Barnhart, who hails from two hours away in Brownsburg, Ind., was able to get the ball back. His parents and girlfriend were also in the crowd for the game. He didn't remember much about rounding the bases.

"I don't know how quickly or slowly I was going. I tried to hold off smiles," said Barnhart, who was recalled from Triple-A Louisville last Saturday when catcher Devin Mesoraco went on the disabled list. "I didn't want to show anybody up or anything. When I got back to the dugout, I saw that everybody was excited for me and everything. It was hard not to smile. It was pretty cool."

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.