May 2, 2021

It Took 121 Years, But An American League Team Finally Posted A 7-3-0 Line (R-H-E)


Back on April 22, 2021, the Mariners beat the Red Sox 7-3 despite getting only three hits.

Mariners - 000 002 010 4 - 7  3   0
Red Sox  - 010 100 100 0 - 3  8   1

Jayson Stark reports that's the first 7-3-0 line in American league history! And:

Somehow or other, there was a 7-3-9 scoreboard line in AL history before there was a 7-3-0! You can thank Dummy Hoy's 1901 Chicago White Sox, who spit out one of the Weirdest and Wildest scoreboard lines ever in a 21-7 loss to the original version of Wid Conroy's Milwaukee Brewers, on May 4, 1901, in the 11th game in the history of the White Sox franchise.

The date was actually May 5, 1901.

Brewers   - 010 836 030 - 21 25  1
White Sox - 040 200 100 -  7  3  9

The only other game in AL history in which a team scored seven runs on three hits occurred on May 9, 1943, in the second game of a doubleheader between Cleveland the and St. Louis Browns.
Cleveland - 301 010 0 - 5  9  1
Browns    - 502 000 x - 7  3  2
The first game lasted 13 innings, so this one could have been called because of darkness.

National League: There have been three games with one team scoring seven runs on three hits:
Cubs (7-3-1) versus Mets,  August 7, 1965
Pirates (7-3-0) versus Cardinals, September 13, 1978
Cubs (7-3-0) versus Cardinals,  October 5, 1991 (G2)
So since 1901, there have been games with R-H-E of 7-3-0, 7-3-1, 7-3-2, and 7-3-9!

Last Wednesday (April 28), Atlanta's Freddie Freeman went 4-for-4 before striking out against the Cubs' first baseman Anthony Rizzo.

STATS states that a batter going 4-for-4 against "real" pitchers before striking out in his fifth at-bat against a position player had actually happened twice before!

August. 14, 1937: Gee Walker (Tigers) against Nig Lipscomb (Browns) (G1 of Tigers' 16-1 and 20-7 sweep)
June 27, 1979 — Mike Vail (Cubs) against Mike Anderson (Phillies)

(Also: August 24, 1940: Rudy York (Tigers) started off 4-for-4 and was 4-for-5 when he struck out against Boston's Ted Williams!)

That Atlanta-Cubs game was also the first time in major league history a team had more position players (3) take the mound than "real" pitchers (2). It was also the third time a team sent as many as three position players to the mound in the same game. The others: Brewers (August 29, 1979) and Cubs (July 20, 2018).

Stark also shared some more Shohei Ohtani factoids:

How rare is it for anybody to pitch and lead the league in homers?

Babe Ruth, 5 times (1918-19-20-21-30)
Jimmie Foxx, 1 time (1939)
Shohei Ohtani, 1 time (2021)

Has any "pitcher" ever hit seven homers in a season before allowing a homer?

Stark says that "back in the olden days, it was harder to define" a pitcher. Looking at the 19th century and considering anyone who pitched even 10 innings, we find Ed (Cannonball) Crane, who hit 11 homers for the 1884 Boston Reds of the Union Association. Confining the search to the "modern era", Jimmie Foxx pitched nine times (22.2 IP) in his final season (1945) and he (like Ohtani) hit seven home runs that year before he allowed one. But it's more than a little inaccurate to label Foxx a pitcher. Ohtani stands alone.

Has a player ever hit 50+ home runs before playing a position other than pitcher?

Not until Ohtani, who had 53 dongs before playing left field late in last Saturday's game. Stark cites the previous record holder as Wes Ferrell (19 homers), the Cleveland pitcher who played left field 13 times in 1933.

1 comment:

laura k said...

How rare is it for anybody to pitch and lead the league in homers?
Babe Ruth, 5 times (1918-19-20-21-30)
Jimmie Foxx, 1 time (1939)
Shohei Ohtani, 1 time (2021)

Now you're making me miss baseball.