4:30 p.m. EDT: Jose Batista grounded out to shortstop with a man on and two outs in the eighth. Unless the Blue Jays can send nine men to the plate in the ninth (or the Twins score eight runs to tie the game at 11), he’s done for the day at three homers.
Jose Bautista, who reclaimed the major league lead in homers by hitting his13th in extra innings Saturday, homered in the third, fourth and sixth innings of Sunday’s game against the Twins.
With the contest still ongoing, he’s due at least one more at-bat.
Bautista popped out foul in his first plate appearance today before taking Twins starter Brian Duensing deep in the third. His subsequent two homers came off Kevin Slowey.
If he can do it again, he’d come the first player since the Blue Jays’ Carlos Delgado to hit four homers in a game. Delgado accomplished the feat against the Devil Rays on Sept. 25, 2003.
Only 15 players in major league history have hit four homers in a game.
Red Sox catcher Sandy Leon achieved a rare feat during Monday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition against the Orioles: he homered twice in one inning. One of those homers happened to be a grand slam.
Leon led off the top of the fifth inning with a solo home run off of Logan Verrett. Verrett continued to get knocked around, giving up three singles and a walk before being relieved by Brian Moran. Moran gave up a walk to load the bases, then a single to knock in a run and keep the bases loaded. Leon stepped back to the plate and swatted a grand slam to left field, making it an eight-run fifth for the Red Sox. The Sox would tack on one more before the inning was mercifully ended.
How often do players homer twice in one inning during the regular season? Not that often. Since 2010, the feat has been accomplished four times in the American League and twice in the National League. The Orioles’ Mark Trumbo was the only one to do it last year.
As for Leon, he’s on track to open the season as the starting catcher in Boston, Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald reported last week.
The Phillies announced on Monday that the club released veteran catchers Ryan Hanigan and Bryan Holaday. Both were competing for the back-up catcher spot on the team’s 25-man roster. With both out of the picture, that means Andrew Knapp has won that honor.
Knapp, 25, hit a combined .266/.330/.390 with eight home runs and 46 RBI in 443 plate appearances last year at Triple-A Lehigh Valley. He did not have a great spring but has hit well as of late, which likely pushed him ahead of Hanigan and Holaday. Knapp will serve as the understudy to starting catcher Cameron Rupp.