Oklahoma City RedHawks third baseman Matt Duffy became one of six players in franchise history to hit three home runs in a game in OKC’s 6-2 win against Salt Lake on Monday.
After talking with The Oklahoman postgame, it turns out there’s a little more to Duffy’s story.
Even after his big night Monday, he said the best day of his life was watching his sister, Catelyn, graduate high school. Catelyn was born with the blood disease Fanconi Anemia, which leads to failure to produce blood marrow.
Catelyn died in the summer of 2010, not long after Duffy’s junior year at Tennessee. In a 2011 article, GoVolsExtra detailed Duffy’s relationship with his sister, including how not getting drafted after his junior season gave Duffy the chance to spend precious time with Catelyn before she died.
“That’s what I think about when I play,” Duffy said Monday. “We were really close, only a year apart. I think about her all the time.”
Another interesting note: Duffy played college ball at Vermont until the program was dropped only two weeks before the start of his sophomore season.
Duffy is only 11 games removed from being called up from Double-A Corpus Christi, where he hit .302 with six home runs. He was voted as a starter at third base into the Texas League All-Star Game on June 24.
He started slow with OKC, hitting .194, but he has hit four homers in the past two games.