Chisenhall-of-Fame Game

Lonnie Chisenhall was already hitting out of his mind, so what do we call Monday’s rampage? Five for five, spiking his season average to .385, with 3 HRs, 9 RBI, and a double that one-hopped the wall. His 15 total bases are one shy of Rocky Colavito’s team record, in their only 4-HR game. Pat Seerey, Bobby Avila and Ellis Burks also had 15 TB for Cleveland.

It’s the 34th game with at least 9 RBI since 1914. No player has done it twice. Some notes on those games:

 

As you’d expect, all 34 games were team wins, most of them blowouts, the average margin over 11 runs. Closest was 9-8 in 10 innings, powered by Mike Greenwell on Sept. 2, 1996 — the only one who plated all his team’s runs. Greenwell batted 8th that night, in what turned out to be the last month of his career. His two home runs, in the 5th & 7th innings, pulled Boston from a 5-0 hole to a 6-5 lead. By the 8th they were back down by two, but his 2-out double tied it; and his 2-out single in the 10th put them ahead for good. Greenwell’s 1.054 Win Probability Added was the highest of these games, by far.

Just two other margins less than six, both 3-run wins: 10-7 for Vlad Guerrero’s Angels on June 2, 2004, the last game before Chisenhall’s with no grand slam. Like Lonnie, Vlad had five separate RBI events: 3-run HR, 2-run HR, 2-run double, RBI single and sac fly, with three go-ahead hits. Erubiel Durazo led a 12-9 win on May 17, 2002: three 2-run HRs, each with his team behind or tied, and then a lead-sealing 3-run double.

Two besides Chisenhall had 9 RBI while making no outs: Jim Bottomley’s record 12 RBI in 1924 was built on 6 for 6, 2 HRs and a double. Danny Tartabull went 5-for-5 in 1992, 2 HRs and a double, all scoring hits; he came out of the game after homering in the top of the 8th, missing a chance to bat again in the 9th with a man aboard.

One other 6-hit game besides Bottomley: Walker Cooper in 1949, 6 for 7 with 10 RBI, 3 HRs in a 23-4 romp. Sixteen games featured exactly 4 hits; nine had 5 hits or more, nine 3 or less. Only Jim Gentile did it with 2 hits, in 1961: grand slams in his first two trips, plus a sac fly.

The last game with 9+ RBI and at least 15 total bases was Mark Whiten’s two-record-tying 4-HR, 12-RBI game in 1993: grand slam, two treys and a deuce, plus a popout. (Each homer scored Gerald Perry, in his only 4-run game.)

Two besides Whiten had more than 15 total bases and 9+ RBI: Gil Hodges, 17 TB in 1950 (4 HRs off different pitchers, plus a single); and Fred Lynn, 1975 (3 HRs, 3B, 1B).

Every player with 9+ RBI had at least one homer. Four did it with just one HR: Jackie Jensen, 1956 (just 3 hits, plus a sac fly); Irish Meusel, 1925 (Giants rapped 30 hits); Phil Weintraub, 1944 (“cycle-plus” with 11 RBI); and Jimmie Foxx, 1933 (the only true cycle in these games, 9 RBI in an 11-5 win).

Only Sammy Sosa did it in just 4 times up: August 10, 2002, on a trio of 3-run homers.

One before Chisenhall drove in 9+ in Rangers Ballpark: Bill Mueller, July 29, 2003, also 3 HRs while playing third base. One other game involving that franchise (for or against), by Ivan Rodriguez in Seattle, April 13, 1999. The Mariners were victimized again less than a month later, by Nomar Garciaparra.

Nomar is the only one to do it as a shortstop. The rest of the position breakdown: P/1 (Tony Cloninger, of course), C/3, 1B/11, 2B/1, 3B/5, LF/3, CF/2, RF/6, DH/1.

Besides the pitcher, Chisenhall’s 106 career RBI and 30 HRs are the fewest of the group. Among the retired players, Norm Zauchin’s 159 RBI are the fewest (10 RBI and three of his 50 HRs in one 1955 game), while Phil Weintraub’s 32 HRs are the fewest.

Only Tony Lazzeri did it for an eventual World Champion, his 11-RBI game in 1936 (3 HRs and a triple). Two other pennant winners, both Red Sox with 10 RBI: Rudy York in 1946, Fred Lynn in 1975. In all, 11 of the prior 33 were for playoff teams.

Postscript: Chisenhall went 2 for 4 with a double in his next game, lifting his average to .388, tops in the majors — but no RBI, no RISP chances, one trip with a man on first.

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19 Comments on "Chisenhall-of-Fame Game"

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David Horwich
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Looking at Chisenhall’s game from a slightly different angle… His was the 37th game since 1914 in which a player racked up 15+ TB. (This is certainly an incomplete accounting, since at the very least it omits Bobby Lowe and Ed Delahanty’s 4-HR games.) 35 players have achieved the feat; 2 players have done it twice: Willie Mays, 5/13/58 (2 HR, 2 3B, 1B) and 4/30/61 (4 HR) Pat Seerey, 7/13/45 (3 HR, 3B) and 7/18/48 (4 HR) Although 15+ TB is a rare feat, there have been two times it’s been accomplished by 2 different players in relatively short… Read more »
Voomo Zanzibar
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Probably the only game where a team’s 2 and 3 hitters will have 14 hits… in a loss.

no statistician but
Guest

Some interesting details in that game: Eddie Rommel pitched 17 innings in relief—a record?—to get the win, allowing 14 runs, 13 earned. One all-but-forgotten infielder named Johnny Burnett, playing SS for Cleveland, went 9 for 11. What is the record for hits in an extra inning game, I’m wondering? The unmentionables scored 17 runs with only one HR but nine 2-baggers. At the end of nine the score was 15-15 and it stayed that way through inning 15.

Artie Z.
Guest
In response to Voomo and nsb: There are only 4 players (since 1914) who have had 7 or more hits in a game. Burnett, Stennett (1975), Cesar Gutierrez (1970), and Colavito (1962). Burnett had 9 hits and the other 3 had 7. So the 14 hits by Burnett and Averill (or Burnett and Ed Morgan) are the most ever in a single game by two players on the same team, no matter the combination of batting order position and game outcome. nsb – if you are looking for hits by a single team in a game the record (since 1914)… Read more »
Lawrence Azrin
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@9/nsb,

I’m pretty sure that the nine hits by Burnett _is_ the all-time record for hits in a game (at least since 1900). Burnette of course later had musical success with the Johnny Burnette Rock N’Roll Trio, covering Tiny Bradshaw’s “Train Kept A Rollin'” on Coral in 1956.

What? That’s another Johnny Burnette? OOPS!!

David Horwich
Guest

Burnett’s 9 hits are indeed the record for a single game. 7 hits is the record for a 9-inning game (Stennett 1975 and Wilbert Robinson 1892).

Another remarkable thing about Eddie Rommel’s pitching line in the 1932 game is that the Indians got 29 hits and 9 walks off him in his 17 innings of relief. More than 2 baserunners per inning! And yet the Indians lost – they left 24 runners on base.

David Horwich
Guest

Oh, forgot to add – perhaps the most remarkable thing about the Rommel/Foxx/Burnett game, from a modern point of view, is that it took only a little over 4 hours to play an 18-inning, 35-run game.

RJ
Guest

@13 David – For comparison, last night’s 14 inning A’s-Angels game (final score 2-1) took 4 hours 39 minutes.

Doug
Editor
Eddie Rommel’s 17 innings are the second longest relief appearance since at least 1914. The longest is 18.1 innings by Zip Zabel of the Cubs, who relieved starter Bert Humphries after Humphries allowed hits by 3 of his first 5 batters. Zabel didn’t allow zip but he came close – with just two runs and 9 hits allowed over the equivalent of two full games, getting a 4-3 walk-off win over Brooklyn. The Cubs and Dodgers tied at 2-2 after nine, then each added a singleton in the 15th, with the Cubs equalizing on a homer by Vic Saier. Jeff… Read more »
Richard Chester
Guest

Due to the ban on Sunday baseball in Pennsylvania at the time the A’s and Indians made a one day trip to Cleveland to play the game. Always on the lookout to cut costs Connie Mack sent only 2 pitchers along, Lew Krausse Sr., who started the game, and Rommel. Krausse was knocked out of the box early so Rommel had to pitch the rest of the game, no matter how long. I guess if worst came to worst Jimmie Foxx could have pitched.

David P
Guest

I’m puzzled as to why Mack pulled Krausse after only one inning. Granted he pitched poorly but Mack let him finish the inning and the A’s were only down 3-2 at that point. Why pull Krause knowing that you only had one pitcher in the bullpen? Seems a bit strange to me.

David Horwich
Guest
Some more notes on games with 15+ TB by one player: Since 1914, teams with a player with 15+ TB in a game have a W-L record of 34-3. The three losses are: 6/2/28 – Reds blow out the Braves 20-12, nullifying Les Bell’s 3 HR/1 3B performance. 7/6/86 – Expos beat the Braves 11-8 despite Bob Horner’s 4 HR day. 6/19/01 – Twins beat the Indians 10-9 in 12 innings; Ellis Burks went 5-7 for Cleveland with 3 HR, 2B, 1B, but all his homers were solo shots and he ended up with only 3 runs scored and 3… Read more »
Doug
Editor
Lonnie’s 1.9 WAR so far in this, his 4th season, already places him in the top quartile of like players in their 4th seasons, specifically among the 185 players with 500-800 PA and 90-99 OPS+ over their first first 3 seasons. The top qualifying (modern definition) marks of those 4th seasons, all of which Chisenhall is on pace to better: – OPS+: 152, Jack Clark 1978 – BA: .325, Les Bell 1926 – OBP: .406, Stan Hack 1935 – SLG: .562, Adam Lind 2009 – OPS: .932, Adam Lind 2009 Rk Player WAR/pos ▾ Year Age Tm G PA R H… Read more »
Daniel Longmire
Guest

Lynn and Chisenhall have the only two 9+ RBI games that meet this criteria: 5 runs and 3 HR. I’m not sure what that means, but…it’s something.

David P
Guest

Daniel L – Do you you mean 5 hits, not 5 runs?

Daniel Longmire
Guest

Eep! Yes David, that’s what I meant; long day yesterday.

David P
Guest

Lost in the noise surrounding Chisenhall’s amazing game is the fact that Michael Brantley scored 5 runs, becoming just the 13th Clevelander to do so, and the first since Joe Carter in 1986. Odd that no one from those star-studded, high powered offenses of the 90s accomplished this.

Richard Chester
Guest

Zauchin’s 9+ RBI came in his 30th ML game. That’s the earliest in a career that anyone has done it. Up until that game his career RBI total was 5.

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