Minutes before a gunman standing along the third-base line opened fire on GOP lawmakers at a baseball practice in 2017, Ron DeSantis was shagging ground balls right at third base.

But DeSantis, then a House member from Florida, decided to leave practice early that morning to beat the Washington traffic — and missed the bloody mass shooting entirely.

“God’s in charge,” Rep. Roger Williams, R-Texas, who was injured after he dived into the dugout, said of DeSantis’ timing that day.

That stroke of luck and good timing has defined DeSantis’ surprising meteoric rise in politics — from unremarkable House backbencher to popular Florida governor and national conservative hero. And, Republican allies say, it will guide his decision as he inches toward a presidential run in 2024.