Home run hat tricks for Cano, Dejong, Cruz and Betts

Noah Trister Ap Baseball Writer
Tuesday, July 30, 2019
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Minnesota Twins’ Nelson Cruz points to the sky at home plate after hitting his third home run of the game during the fifth inning of a baseball game as Chicago White Sox catcher James McCann, left, looks on Thursday in Chicago.

It is easy to become desensitized to all the big home run numbers these days. Still, this past week was pretty special.

Robinson Canó, Paul DeJong, Nelson Cruz and Mookie Betts each hit three homers in a game and they did it on consecutive days. The unprecedented streak of home run hat tricks began with Canó on Tuesday and was capped, somewhat fittingly, by Betts on Friday.

It was the fifth time in his career — one shy of the major league record — that Betts hit three homers in a game.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, this was the first time in major league history there were three straight days with a threehomer game. There have now been 15 of them this season. The first threehomer game was by Paul Goldschmidt back on March 29. The longest stretch without one was 21 days, between Christian Yelich (April 15) and Justin Turner (May 7).

Only two teams this season — the Cardinals and Twins — have had more than one player pull off the feat. Cruz and Max Kepler did it for Minnesota, DeJong and Goldschmidt for St. Louis.

Only the Yankees and Pirates have been victimized more than once. New York allowed three homers to Betts and Travis d’Arnaud. Pittsburgh gave up three to DeJong and Derek Dietrich.

According to the Baseball-Reference.com play index — which includes data going back to 1908 — the most three-homer games in one season was 22 in 2001. Barry Bonds did it twice that year en route to the single-season home run record. Sammy Sosa had three three-homer games between Aug. 9 and Sept.

23. Jeromy Burnitz and Richie Sexson accomplished the feat in the same game for Milwaukee; in a September win over the eventual champion Diamondbacks.

Aside from 2001, only two other years are still ahead of 2019 on the list. There were 19 three-homer games in 2016, including two by Betts. There were 16 in 1999.

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