Four, off the floor.
The White Sox hit four consecutive home runs in the fifth inning of a 7-2 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Sunday at Guaranteed Rate Field, the second time in franchise history the feat has been achieved.
Say what you want about these up-and-down, hot-and-cold Sox. They’re never dull.
Yoan Moncada started the flurry with a three-run home run to right field, followed by Yasmani Grandal on a blast to right and home runs to left by Jose Abreu and Eloy Jimenez.
All four homers came against Cardinals right-hander Roel Ramirez, who made his major-league debut. Ramirez replaced Dakota Hudson to open the fifth with the Sox leading 1-0 on Jimenez’s RBI single in the first.
It was the 10th time in history a team hit four home runs in a row and the second time for the Sox, who also did it Aug. 14, 2008, against the Royals when Jim Thome, Paul Konerko, Alexei Ramirez and Juan Uribe all went deep at U.S. Cellular Field.
The Nationals’ Howie Kendrick, Trea Turner, Adam Eaton and Anthony Rendon hit consecutive dingers June 9 of last season against the Padres’ Craig Stammen.
The Sox’ offense had been quiet in the first two games of the series, getting three hits in each of its losses in a doubleheader sweep Saturday at the hands of the Cardinals, a team playing for the first time in 17 days. It only had two hits before exploding for six in the six-run fifth.
“We needed something like that to kind of spark us,” manager Rick Renteria said.
It was the first homer of the season for Grandal, and Moncada was 0-for-12 in his last five games and 7-for-42 with two extra-base hits in his last 10 games.
“Terrible,” is how Grandal, who signed a four-year, $68 million contract — the richest in franchise history — described his performance thus far. He’s batting .230 with 10 RBI.
“Hopefully the luck turns my way in the next few weeks and we get it rolling,” Grandal said. “As of right now, I’m still trying to figure out.”
Jimenez has homered four times in his last five games and leads the team with seven. Moncada and Abreu have four each.
“It’s always fun to do it back-to-back, or back-to-back-to-back-to-back, but when you’ve got four guys who are doing it in a row, no matter who it is, it becomes special,” Grandal said.
“It’s great to bounce back. A lot of guys took their at-bats deep and made Hudson work, made their bullpen work, and we were able to get to him and get ahead early and keep putting it on them.”
Moncada’s homer traveled 417 feet, Grandal’s 425 feet, Abreu’s 372 feet and Jimenez’ 402 feet, a 1,616-foot exhale for a team that didn’t want to fall to 10-12 and instead heads into a four-game home series against the Tigers at 11-11.
“The reason for that struggle was I lost my rhythm at the plate,” Moncada said through a translator. “I was feeling good, but I was out of sync with my swing.
“It was a tough day for us Saturday, but [Sunday] was a different day. We showed what we are capable of doing.”
No postgame pep talk from left-hander Dallas Keuchel (3-2, 3.07 ERA), who pitched 5‰ innings of two-run ball and hasn’t had a bad start yet, was needed after this one.
“As far as my [we’re going through the motion] comments [last Monday], that was just a matter of fact,” Keuchel said. “It wasn’t anything to fire the guys up or light a fire. That was what it was. I said what I felt, and life goes on. We’re doing all right.”