Exactly 10 years ago, Daniel Bard was dominating the American League.
He was fresh off a one-inning outing against Seattle in which the then-Red Sox reliever struck out two of the three batters he faced, lowering his ERA to 1.71 and batting average against to .150. There was perhaps no more dominant set-up man in baseball.
That was a long time ago. In fact, not a single player in the Red Sox lineup that day has played in a major league game since two years ago, with Bard's batterymate Kevin Cash now managing the Rays.
It's been well-documented the valleys Bard has had to endure since 2011, eventually retiring from baseball, joining the Diamondbacks front office until he decided to give it one more try with the Rockies this past spring training. (For more on Bard's path, click here.)
Ultimately, Bard's story became a feel-good one. The 35-year-old was informed earlier in the week that after not having appeared in a major league game he had made the Rockies' 30-man roster. And to top things off Saturday presented an actual opportunity to pitch.
Well, let's just say the pitcher's career path just took another notable turn.
Bard came on for Rockies' starter Jon Gray in the fifth inning, going on to pitch 1 1/3 scoreless frames, allowing a pair of hits and striking out one. It would be good enough to earn the win in Colorado's 3-2 victory over Texas.