Sunday, March 29, 2015

Touch 'Em All: Hamilton leads AL in nearly everything

Josh Hamilton, passing coach Dave Anderson, had one of the greatest nights in history.
Josh Hamilton, passing coach Dave Anderson, had one of the greatest nights in history. KENNETH K. LAM / Baltimore Sun

Josh Hamilton had a night for the ages on Tuesday in more ways than one.

The four home runs were special, but 15 other guys have done that - four already in this century.

What makes Hamilton's night historic were the AL record 18 total bases, and his season totals.

The Texas centerfielder's 5-for-5 performance gave him a .406 batting average with 14 homers and 36 RBIs - all tops in the league.

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  • But he immediately quashed any thoughts of a Triple Crown.

    "The chances of that happening are very, very, very, very, very, very slim," Hamilton said. "So why worry about something that won't happen anyway?"

    He also said the stupendous feat wasn't something he would dwell on.

    "You don't take the moment to the next day," he said, "because 99.9 percent of the time it isn't going to happen again. One hundred percent of the time in the case of this. Don't live there. Just come in here [the clubhouse], prepare, and move forward."

    Hamilton also has an impressive sense of timing - he becomes a free agent after this season.

    Already worth a huge amount, the 2010 MVP had the happy sensation of knowing the price just up.


    For the record

    The Dodgers' Shawn Green set the major-league record for total bases in a game on May 23, 2002, by going 6 for 6 with a single, double and four dingers.


    Mo will know if it's time

    Mariano Rivera has a blood clot in his right calf, the latest medical problem for the longtime New York Yankees closer who injured his knee last week while shagging fly balls during batting practice.

    Rivera is on blood-thinning medication intended to dissolve the clot and said he is OK, though he was scared when he received the diagnosis.

    The 42-year-old, baseball's career saves leader with 608, said he can guarantee he will work hard and do "whatever it takes" to return next season.

    But if his leg doesn't come back strong enough, then he will take it as a sign that it's time to retire.


    Fast fact

    The Cubs' Bryan LaHair has reached base in 27 straight games dating to April 8.


    A standup guy

    Toronto demoted struggling closer Francisco Cordero a day after he gave up a game-ending grand slam to Brandon Inge in a 7-3 loss to Oakland.

    "I'm not doing my job," Cordero admitted, saying he agreed with the move.


    Injury report

    The Royals placed pitcher Jonathan Sánchez on the 15-day disabled list with left biceps tendinitis.

    White Sox closer Chris Sale will undergo an MRI on his sore left elbow on Thursday, pitching coach Don Cooper said.


    Contact Don McKee at

    This article contains information from the Associated Press.


    Don McKee Inquirer Sports Writer
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