This Week in Cubs History: Sammy Sosa Goes Yard Twice…in the Same Inning
In this week’s edition of TWiCH, we look back to 1996 and Sammy Sosa becoming the first Cubs player to hit two home runs in an inning. On May 16, Sosa took two Houston pitchers deep in the 7th inning and led the Cubs to a 13-1 routing of the Astros.
The Cubs’ bats came alive early and they jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the 2nd inning when Leo Gomez knocked a three-run home run to left center. The Cubs continued their scoring drive in the 3rd when Mark Grace and Sosa started opened the inning with singles. A wild pitch allowed both runners to advance and a four-pitch walk to Luis Gonzalez loaded the bases.
A routine double-play ball to short turned into a wild throw, allowing Grace and Sosa to both score. The game got quiet for the next three innings as only a combined four hits were allowed, but the Cubs bats got white hot soon enough.
Sosa led off the inning and got right to work, lining an opposite-field homer over the ivy in right. Two batters later, Scott Servais would also go deep for a two-run homer. With two outs in the inning, Grace knocked a three-run home run to continue the Cubs’ scoring drive.
After Grace finished trotting around the bases, Sosa stepped up to the dish for his second at-bat of the inning. On the very first pitch, Sosa smashed a towering bomb to left-center for his second dinger of the inning.
The Cubs would finish the afternoon with 13 runs, eight of which came in that big inning, on 13 hits. Sosa became the first Cub and the 31st major leaguer to go yard twice in the same inning, accomplishing the feat against two separate pitchers: Jeff Tabaka and Jim Dougherty. Sosa finished the game going 3-for-5 with the two homers, a single, and a strikeout.