Photo Credit: Tom Haggerty/Flickr

That first one is always special with everything. For big league ball players, that first home run is always an unforgettable moment. And on Thursday, Detroit Tigers infielder Dixon Machado finally got that monkey off his back.

Machado got the starting nod at shortstop yesterday in the series finale at home against the San Francisco Giants. It took him 162 plate appearances before connecting on this Chris Stratton offering for his first big league home run.

Then Machado was promptly greeted with the silent treatment from his teammates in the dugout, before Nick Castellanos ignited the mob scene celebration.

Machado finished 1 for 3 on Thursday with the two-run homer. He’s played in just 33 games this year, but is hitting .314 with a .742 OPS while showing improved plate discipline (10 strikeouts in 70 at-bats).

Tigers manager Brad Ausmus has tried to plug in the 25-year-old slick-fielding Machado at the right times. Dixon has played 13 games at both shortstop and second base, and four games at third base.

With the trade rumors swirling around the Tigers, a spot could open up down the road for Machado to receive more regular playing time.

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