Friday, May 2, 2014

May 2, 1954: Stan The Man Blasts 5 Homeruns In One Day

     On May 2, 1954, Stan The Man Musial set a major league record by blasting 5 home runs during a doubleheader against the Giants at Busch Stadium. In the first contest, The Man blasted a solo shot in the third, a two run shot in the fifth, and a three run shot in the eighth. The first two came against Johnny Antonelli, and the third came with Jim Hearn on the mound. Musial also singled in the contest as he finished the first game 4 for 4 with six RBIs. The Cardinals fell to the Giants 9-7 in the second tilt, but it wasn't because of a lack of effort by The Man who blasted two more against reliever Hoyt Wilhelm. The fourth Musial blast was was a two run shot in the fifth, then he capped off the record setting performance with a solo shot to lead of the seventh. Stan's final home run of the day smacked into a taxicab on Grand Avenue. The driver, Joe Caparo, was listening on the radio, and returned the historic ball to Musial. In return, The Man signed a ball for him. At the end of the day Musial had not only set a new record for home runs in a doubleheader, he had also set a record for total bases with 21, and the bat that he had used was sent to Cooperstown.

      The 5 home runs in a doubleheader was matched by San Diego's Nate Colbert in 1972. Colbert surpassed the 21 total bases mark by one, and still holds that record today. To date, Colbert is the only other player to join Stan in the 5 home runs in a doubleheader club. A native St. Louisan, Colbert was sitting in the stands the day The Man set the mark, and nearly 20 years later he joined his childhood hero in a club that includes just him and the one the only Stan The Man Musial.

Not one, but two historic box scores On This Day In Cardinal Nation:

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