Wednesday afternoon in Chicago, on the North Side, Dioner Navarro became the first switch-hitting Cub in Cubs history to hit three home runs in a single game. This got us wondering, of course, about the unlikeliest players with three homers in one game.
Short Answer: Dioner Navarro's on the list, but he's hardly at the top.
The top spot might go to little Freddie Patek, who hit only 41 home runs in his long career; three of them came in this game (and if memory serves, the Green Monster helped Patek quite a lot).
Or what about Tuffy Rhodes? Like Navarro, Rhodes did his three-homer damage at Wrigley Field. How unlikely does that seem? Considering that Rhodes hit only 13 home runs in his whole career, mighty unlikely indeed. But considering that he hit a million home runs in Japan, maybe not so terribly unlikely at all.
Jose Ortiz hit 14 homers in his whole career and didn't go crazy in Japan, which makes this game seem all the crazier.
Jeff Treadway hit three homers in one game, just 25 in the rest of his career. Brant Brown hit three home runs in one game, just 42 in the rest of his career. Chris Woodward hit three homers in one game, just 30 in the rest of his career.
And all this is just going back to the late 1970s. Going back even farther, there's Don Leppert in 1963, Steve Boros in 1962, Bill Glynn in 1954, Del Wilber in 1951, and -- my all-time favorite, perhaps our winner -- knuckleballer Jim Tobin in 1942.
I doubt if Navarro's in our All-Time Top 10. He'll probably win this season, though!