Though he will be forever remembered for a ball that traveled a little over 100 feet last November 4, Gonzo's
regular season work was recorded as one of the top power displays in big league history ... he homered on the
final day of the season to finish with 57, the eighth different player ever to hit at least that many roundtrippers in a season ... Luis finished third in the MVP balloting behind Barry Bonds and Sammy Sosa ... he obliterated his previous bests in virtually every category while placing his name among baseball's elite ... his 419 total bases finished second in the N.L. and tied Lou Gehrig for the 10th highest total in big league history,while his 100 extra-base hits made him just the 12th player (15th time) to ever break the century mark in long hits ... Gonzo set the tone for a phenomenal year in the first series in Los Angeles, hitting a 2-run homer off of Dodger Jose Nunez to stake the D-Backs to a 3-2 win ... Luis followed the next night with 2 more home runs and was on his way to setting a National League record and tying Ken Griffey Jr's major league mark with 13 home runs in April ... Luis set the N.L. mark and tied the big league record on April 26, hitting a solo homer off of Atlanta's Greg Maddux in the first inning, then connecting on a 3-run blast off of southpaw Damian Moss in the eighth ... Gonzalez was named the N.L. Player-of-the-Month for April, then remained hot in May, fashioning a 14-game hitting streak in which he batted .429 (24-for-56) with 6 home runs and 13 RBI ... included was his fourth 2-homer game of the young season on May 17 in Cincinnati, becoming the fastest ever to 20 home runs, achieving the mark in 40 games, a game quicker than Mickey Mantle in 1956 ... Luis recorded the 1,500th hit of his career by tripling on May 30 in San Francisco ... he was awarded the league Player-of-the-Month award for June, hitting .417 (43-for-103) in 27 games with 26 runs, 7 doubles, 12 homers and 35 RBI, totaling 86 bases for a June slugging pct. of .835 ... included was the first 3-homer game of his career, going deep to all 3 fields of Kansas City's Kauffman Stadium to lead the D-Backs to an 11-4 win ... Gonzo hit another hot streak at mid-month, homering 6 times and driving in 15 in a 7-game stretch to earn co-N.L. Player-of-the-Week honors with Houston's Lance Berkman ... included was a 2-homer, 6-RBI affair on June 19 in Los Angeles, then 2 nights later in Colorado he hit a grand slam off of Colorado's Gabe White, Gonzo's first slam since June 20, 1997 ... he recorded his seventh multi-homer game of the season on July 3 in Houston 's Enron Field, taking Scott Elarton deep twice, including his second grand slam of 2001, third of his career ... he continued the long ball momentum into the All-Star break, though Gonzo did not take a break, as he was voted into the N.L. starting lineup, going 1-for-2 ... he was also the surprise winner of the Home Run Derby the day before in Safeco Field, knocking off Sammy Sosa in the finals ... when regular season play resumed, Luis snapped the longest home run drought in franchise history with a 2-run blast in Anaheim off of Ismael Valdes to give Arizona the lead en route to a 6-2 win and halting a stretch of 58.0 innings in which the D-Backs had not homered ... he hit his 39th and 40th homers in Arizona's 100th game on July 24 against San Diego, driving in 5 in an 11-0 victory, his eighth and final multi-homer game of the year ... Gonzalez became only the fifth player ever to hit 50 home runs before September 1 when he took Kirk Rueter deep at home on August 29, joining Bonds, Sosa, Mark McGwire and Roger Maris ... though he finished the year with 57 home runs, #54 was one of his biggest, his only "walk-off" blast of the year to stake Arizona to a 4-3 win in 11 innings over the Dodgers on September 28 ... he played in all 162 games for the second consecutive year, closing the season with the majors' longest active streak of games played at 327 ... counting the post-season, Luis was the first player to participate in 179 games in a year ... 2001 was his third straight 100-RBI season with Arizona after never driving in more than 79 in any of his 8 prior seasons ... his homer on July 13 in Anaheim was the 200th of his career ... he has homered 137 times in his last 4 seasons, totaling 2,388 at bats, a 17.4 at bat per home run, after hitting just 84 in his first 8 big league seasons totaling 2,767 AB's for a 32.9 ratio ... Gonzo's final numbers matched him with Babe Ruth's 1921 campaign as the only players in history to hit at least .320 with 35 doubles, 50 homers, 120 runs, 130 RBI, 100 walks, 100 extra-base hits and 400 total bases in a season ... Gonzalez also completed his first career errorless campaign playing in 161 games in left ... his only non-start of the year was on May 27 in San Diego, but he appeared as a pinch hitter ... one of the down sides to becoming a power hitter was that he finished the year tied for fifth in the N.L. in hit by pitches with 14, then was plunked 3 times in the post-season.
2001 Postseason Highlights: Luis entered the bottom of the ninth inning of the seventh game of the World Series hitless in 4 at bats, but by the end of that at bat he would be in the midst of the greatest celebration to ever hit the Valley of the Sun ... with the bases loaded and a drawn-in infield he sent teammates and fans into a frenzy with a bloop single off of Mariano Rivera to drive home Jay Bell with the winning run that staked Arizona to a remarkable 3-2 win and its first World Championship ... Gonzo prefaced the game #7 heroics with 2 hits in the 15-2 runaway in game #6, including a 2-run double in Arizona's 8-run third inning ... he jumpstarted the World Series experience with a 2-run homer off of Mike Mussina in game #1, giving the D-Backs a 3-1 lead en route to a 9-1 triumph ... it was Gonzo's third roundtripper of the post-season and 60th overall on the year ... the Fall Classic also featured a sidebar in which Gonzalez and his childhood best friend, Tino Martinez, each played a huge role in their club's success ... raised in Tampa, FL, they played on the same Jefferson High School team that went to the state finals in 1985 and even worked in the same cigar factory that was run by Martinez's grandfather ... Gonzo's overall postseason batting average was an uncharacteristic .246 (16-for-65), due in a large part to an injured right wrist from being hit by pitches and a right hamstring strain ... he still provided key offensive contributions throughout Arizona's run to the title, including a big night in Atlanta in game #4 of the NLCS when the D-Backs took a 3-1 lead in the series ... Luis was on base 5 times going 2-for-3 with 2 walks, a hit by pitch while scoring twice and knocking in 3 with a ninth inning homer to blow open the 11-4 victory ... he closed out the Division Series against St. Louis by reaching base safely in 7 of his last 11 plate appearances over the final 3 games, including a solo homer off of Darryl Kile in Arizona's 5-3 win at Busch Stadium in game #3.
Enjoyed 2nd straight solid season in a Diamondback uniform, establishing career bests in doubles (47), home runs (31) and RBI (114), breaking the personal marks he set during the '99 season, while also becoming the only D'Back in the franchise's brief history to appear in and start all 162 games...earned co-Player-of-the-Year honors with Steve Finley as voted by the Arizona chapter of the BBWAA...was also named to his 2nd consecutive Good Guy Award by the BBWAA...he was selected to travel to Japan as part of the MLB All-Star tour in November, playing 8 exhibition games against Japanese League All-Star teams.
Set a club record with 80 extra-base hits and is the first Diamondback to drive in 100 runs in consecutive seasons.
Opened the season going 10-for-19 (.526) through the first 5 games, featuring a club record-tying 3-double affair on April 7 vs. the Pirates... had an up-and-down first 5 weeks of the season in which his average dropped to .226 on April 20, returned to .273 in a week's time, then fell again to .229 as late as May 6 before kicking off a stretch in which Gonzo never went more than 2 straight games without a hit the rest of the way...the week between slumps featured career-best power display, hitting 5 home runs in a 6-game stretch including a club record-tying 3 straight games with a roundtripper from April 26-28...he later tied that mark with 3 in a row from June 7-10.
Recorded 300th career double on June 18 vs. San Diego.
Earned his first career N.L. Player-of-the-Week honors by hitting .417 (10-for-24) from June 5-11 with 3 doubles, 4 homers, 8 RBI and a 1.042 slugging pct...would earn 2nd league weekly honor for July 24-30, sharing the award with Colorado's Jeffrey Hammonds...2nd award was based on .450 week (9-for-20) with 4 homers and 6 RBI, featuring 8th career 2-homer game on July 30 at Florida.
Award winning week began with the first cycle in club history on July 5 in Houston, the 229th in major league history...Gonzo was 2-for-4 with a single and a double entering the 8th inning, but tripled in the 8th and homered in the 9th to become the 10th player in baseball
history to both hit for the cycle and author a 30-game hitting streak (1999)...also tied a club record by scoring 4 runs in the game, the 4th 4-run game in franchise history.
Had 9th career 2-homer game on August 3 against Atlanta, while driving in 5 to match the team-high for a game during the 2000 season.
Narrowly missed his 2nd cycle of the season on August 19, collecting a single, double and triple vs. Chicago Cubs.
Had a season-high 14-game hitting streak from August 6-21, hitting .382 (21-for-55) with 12 runs and 10 RBI.
Established his single-season career high for home runs by hitting his 27th on August 30 in Montreal off of Felipe Lira.
Tied a personal single-game best with a trio of 4-hit games giving him 13 in his career...celebrated his 33rd birthday with 3 hits vs. Florida on September 3.
Finished the season with an 11-game hitting streak in which he batted .356 (16-for-45) with 10 runs scored, 4 doubles, 4 home runs and 20 RBI...included was a huge split doubleheader in San Francisco on September 23, going a combined 3-for-8 in the twinbill featuring a 3-run homer in each contest, totaling 8 RBI on the day.