BOMBS AWAY: Arkansas Travelers' designated hitter Hogan Windish became the second Travelers' player to hit four home runs in a game

When Hogan Windish stepped off the team bus yesterday afternoon at Hammons Field in Springfield, Missouri, he had three total home runs on the 2024 season. By the time he stepped back on the bus last night, he had more than doubled that number.

The Arkansas Travelers’ designated hitter on Tuesday, Windish stamped his name in the history books in impressive fashion, smacking four home runs and driving in all nine of Arkansas’ runs in a 9-4 defeat of the Springfield Cardinals. In his five plate appearances, the right-handed-hitting Windish walked in the first inning, clubbed a grand slam in the third to give the Travelers the lead, launched a two-run shot in the fifth, hit another two-run bomb in the seventh, and capped his night with a solo blast in the top of the ninth to stretch the Travs’ lead to five runs.

Advertisement

Drafted by the Seattle Mariners in the seventh round in 2022 out of the Univ. of North Carolina at Greensboro, Windish is the first minor-league player to drive in all nine of his team’s runs in one game. Along with former major league outfielder Mike Greenwell, Windish is only the second player at any level of professional baseball to do so. Greenwell accomplished the feat during a 9-8 victory in 1996.

Windish joins former Travs outfielder Tyrone Horne, who did it in July 1998, as the second Travelers’ player to homer four times in a single game. The feat has only been accomplished eight times in Texas League history dating back to 1902.

Advertisement

Several interesting (if not necessarily meaningful) coincidences and factoids surround Windish’s night. Consider:

  • Horne’s four-tater game came while Arkansas was the double-A affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals; Windish’s night came against the Cardinals’ current double-A club.
  • Horne and Windish were both born in North Carolina, with Horne born in Troy in 1970 and Windish one county over in Pinehurst in 1999.
  • The last Texas League player to hit four in a game was Chandler Redmond of the Springfield Cardinals in 2022; Redmond was in the Springfield lineup last night.
  • When Greenwell drove in all nine of the Red Sox runs in 1996, Boston’s opponent was the Seattle Mariners; the Travelers are the Mariners’ double-A affiliate.
  • The third-inning grand slam was Windish’s first home run since a solo blast on May 21 at Corpus Christi, a span of 86 at-bats without a homer.
  • Despite entering the game with only three homers, last night was not Windish’s first multi-homer game of the season; he hit his first two long balls of the year on April 9 in Tulsa.
  • All seven of Windish’s home runs this season have come on the road.

Perhaps the easiest way to explain how dominant Windish was on Tuesday night, however, is this: going into last night’s contest, Windish was tied for eighth on the team in homers, was seventh in RBIs, and had a slash line of .205/.326/.315; by the end of the night, he was tied for second in homers, sat third in RBIs, and sported a .221/.340/.387 slash line.

Advertisement

To be fair, a four-homer game doesn’t guarantee anything as far as how the rest of Windish’s baseball career will unfold. After all, Horne hit 37 home runs the year he hit four in a game for the Travelers, was named 1998 Texas League Player of the Year, and still never made it to the major leagues. Chandler Redmond hit four homers in a game two years ago at double-A, and he’s still at double-A, where he is currently one of the worst hitters in the Texas League.

None of that matters right now, though. Regardless of whether Hogan Windish makes it to the majors some day, no one can ever take from him that, for one hot Midwestern night in June 2024, he was the most dominant hitter in all of professional baseball.

Advertisement