A baseball player has hit for the cycle 302 times, but knocking six hits in a nine-inning game has only happened 96 times. Well, 97 when you include what Alex Rios did on Tuesday night.
Rios went 6-for-6 for the Chicago White Sox in their 11-4 win over the Detroit Tigers. Making things even more impressive, four of those hits came off Tigers ace Justin Verlander, marking the first time any hitter has gotten four hits in a game against Verlander, according to Elias Sports Bureau.
A few facts about Rios' night that you can use to amaze your friends:
• In addition to his six hits, Rios also stole two bases, making him the first player to do that since Sammy Sosa in 1993, and only the fourth overall.
• The last player to get six hits in a nine-inning game was Adrian Gonzalez in 2009. Jean Segura tallied six in May, but it was in a 14-inning game.
• Some of the guys in the six-hit club that Rios just joined? Buttercup Dickerson, Jack Glasscock, King Kelly and Duff Cooley — and those are just guys from pre-1900, back when dudes had much radder names. More contemporary players include Shawn Green, Freddy Sanchez, Kirby Puckett, Cal Ripken Jr., Ian Kinsler, Johnny Damon, Carlos Pena and Omar Vizquel.
• Rios' batting average jumped from .267 to .281 after his six-hit performance. The six hits match his July 3-July 8 total.
• Six hits is more than Albert Pujols, Mike Napoli, Jay Bruce, Giancarlo Stanton, Yoenis Cespedes, Evan Longoria and Justin Morneau have in July.
Now the bigger question: How much will this performance help Rios' trade value? Before Tuesday's game the regular starting outfield for the San Francisco Giants — one possible suitor for Rios — had just eight hits combined in July.
The Giants hit pretty well on Tuesday, even though they lost 10-6 to the Mets. Their starting outfield had five hits. Hunter Pence had two of those, which doubled his previous July total of just one hit. So you get the point.
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