Yermin Mercedes of La Romana, Dominican Republic made Major League Baseball history on Friday. The Chicago White Sox designated hitter became only the third player ever to record five hits in his first Major League start according to the Associated Press, in a 12-8 White Sox win over the Los Angeles Angels.
Mercedes collected his five hits while batting eighth in the order. His first hit was a single in the third inning and would later score in the inning on a Jose Abreu grand slam. Mercedes then hit a two-run RBI single in the fourth inning which put the White Sox up 7-1. That was followed by a two-out single in the sixth inning, a two-out single in the eighth inning, and a two-run RBI double in the ninth inning, which put the White Sox up 12-6.
The first Major League Baseball player to record five hits in his first Major League start was Fred Clarke of Winterset, IA, who achieved the mark for the Louisville Cardinals in a 13-6 Cardinals loss to the Philadelphia Phillies on June 30, 1894. The second Major League Baseball player to record five hits in his first Major League start was Cecil Travis of Riverdale, GA, who accomplished the feat for the Washington Senators in an 11-10 win over the Cleveland Indians on May 16, 1933. However, it should be noted tgat Travis had five hits in seven at bats, and was not perfect at the plate like Mercedes and Clarke were.
Prior to Friday, Mercedes only had one Major League at bat. It came in the eighth inning, in a 9-2 White Sox win over the Kansas City Royals on August 2, 2020. Mercedes grounded out.
The White Sox also won their first game of the season after losing 4-3 to the Angels on Thursday. Expectations are high for the White Sox this season as the team is expected to battle the Minnesota Twins and Indians for first place in the American League Central.