August 25, 2011

Home Runs In Consecutive Innings

The Red Sox hit a home run in each of the first four innings last night in Texas.
1st: Adrian Gonzalez, solo, 2 outs 2nd: David Ortiz, solo, 0 outs 3rd: Gonzalez, runner on 1st, 1 out 4th: Jarrod Saltalamacchia, runner on 1st, 0 outs
I don't know what the MLB record for consecutive innings with a home run is -- I can pretty much guarantee it's not four -- but I figured I'd take a quick look at some of the games in which the record was most likely set.

Since 1919 (and, most likely, in all of baseball history), there have been 20 games in which a team has hit at least eight home runs. Eighteen teams have hit eight, one team has hit nine, and one team has hit 10.

On September 14, 1987, the Blue Jays hit 10 dongs and beat the Orioles 18-3. The Jays were home, so they batted in only eight innings: 052 111 71x. Toronto did not hit any home runs in the fourth inning, so they hit HRs in only four consecutive innings (5th-8th).

The Reds hit nine home runs (by eight different players) on September 4, 1999, in Philadelphia, pounding the Phillies 22-3. Again, the Reds had several one-run innings - 031 191 160 - but their home runs were spread out! 011 121 120. Seven consecutive innings! (Plus, Stan Belinda earned a save for the Reds!)

Since every other team has hit, at most, eight home runs, a team would have had to hit one per inning for eight innings to top the 1999 Reds. As you can see, most of those 8-HR teams did not even score in five consecutive innings. I bolded the linescores of three possible challengers to the Reds.
2007-07-31  NYY CHW  W 16-3   - 405 203 20x
2006-06-18  DET CHC  W 12-3   - 600 220 020
2006-05-28  ATL CHC  W 13-12  - 150 113 100 01
2005-06-30  TEX LAA  W 18-5   - 151 052 40x 
2005-05-21  TEX HOU  W 18-3   - 281 012 40x
2004-07-16  CLE SEA  W 18-6   - 106 003 215
2002-05-23  LAD MIL  W 16-3   - 350 110 024
2000-06-20  DET TOR  W 18-6   - 523 200 024
1997-04-25  CLE MIL  W 11-4   - 000 402 221
1996-06-27  OAK CAL  W 18-2   - 212 433 102 - no HR in 3rd, 9th
1987-09-14  TOR BAL  W 18-3   - 052 111 71x - no HR in 4th
1978-07-30  MON ATL  W 19-0   - 018 133 102 - no HR in 2nd, 7th, 9th
1977-07-04  BOS TOR  W  9-6   - 000 021 24x
1963-08-29* MIN WSA  W 14-2   - 301 016 012
1961-04-30  SFG MLN  W 14-4   - 103 304 030
1956-08-18  CIN MLN  W 13-4   - 014 010 34x
1953-08-30* MLN PIT  W 19-4   - 011 342 440 - no HR in 2nd
1939-06-28* NYY PHA  W 23-2   - 015 904 400
* - All three were first games of DH
In the 1953 game, I had to check the more complete box at Retrosheet, where we see that the Milwaukee did not homer in the 2nd, so they had only six straight innings.

Therefore, the record for most consecutive innings with a home run is seven, set by the Cincinnati Reds on September 4, 1999.


Dr. Jeff said...

Just curious, how long did this research take?

allan said...

Maybe an hour from start to posting? I did it after the game last night.

laura k said...

I did it after the game last night.

A glimpse into The Mysteries of the Basement.

FenFan said...

Glad to have given you the idea...

Credit to you for doing the research, though...


Kid Cincy said...

I was at the game with my boys. Big Reds fan ... We saw the series in Philly and this was a spectacular game to watch of course. Knew it had to be a record while I watched it. Checked on it after and saw it was ... Sports Center reported it as a record At the time.

Kid Cincy said...

My boys and I were at this game! Amazing game and I knew the home run per inning over 7 innings just had to be a record ... Which I saw that it was when sports center covered the highlights that night.

Unknown said...

Had to look this up after the Reds had 5 consecutive innings with a HR today, with 2 of those being grand slams. If I recall, they did mention the game on Sept '99 during the broadcast today.