Braves Stat of the Week: Eric Hinske's Rare Feat

In last night's game, the Braves entered the 9th inning up 2-1. Eleven batters later, they were up 10-1, and still only had one out (Martin Prado grounded into a double play to end the fun). Lost in all of this excitement was that Eric Hinske batted twice in the inning, and had two hits: a 2-run homer and an RBI single. 

While 2-hit innings are not that rare, what makes Hinske's feat memorable is that he only appeared as a pinch-hitter. (He was replaced immediately after the half-inning by Cristhian Martinez, who pitched the bottom of the 9th.) I was curious about how often a player who only played as a pinch-hitter had 2 hits in a game. As it turns out, it's pretty rare. Here's the whole list (most recent first):

Rk Player Date Tm Opp Rslt PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI
1 Eric Hinske 2011-04-19 ATL LAD W 10-1 2 2 1 2 0 0 1 3
2 Melvin Mora 2010-07-30 COL CHC W 17-2 2 2 2 2 1 0 0 1
3 Angel Pagan 2006-09-06 CHC PIT W 7-2 2 2 1 2 0 0 0 1
4 Julio Franco 2004-04-07 ATL NYM W 18-10 2 2 1 2 0 0 0 3
5 Brian Hunter 2001-06-16 PHI BAL W 14-6 2 2 1 2 0 0 1 2
6 Greg Norton 1996-08-19 CHW DET W 12-7 2 2 1 2 0 0 0 0
7 Oscar Azocar 1991-10-02 SDP LAD W 9-4 2 2 1 2 0 0 0 1
8 Dave Henderson 1987-05-17 BOS MIN L 8-10 2 2 1 2 0 0 1 2
9 Jeff Stone 1986-07-06 PHI CIN W 12-5 2 2 2 2 1 0 1 2
10 Chris Bando 1983-09-03 CLE OAK W 13-6 2 2 0 2 0 0 0 1
11 Duane Kuiper 1982-08-18 SFG PIT W 16-9 2 2 2 2 0 0 0 1
12 Bill Robinson 1982-08-14 PHI MON W 15-11 2 2 2 2 0 0 1 4
13 Ken Griffey 1980-08-04 (2) CIN SDP W 11-2 2 2 1 2 0 0 0 1
14 Rick Auerbach 1980-06-15 CIN STL L 9-10 2 2 1 2 0 0 1 2
15 Cliff Johnson 1975-05-31 HOU PHI W 15-3 2 2 2 2 1 0 1 3
16 Russ Nixon 1962-05-04 BOS CHW W 13-6 2 2 2 2 0 0 0 2
17 Babe Young 1942-05-14 NYG CIN W 12-6 2 2 2 2 1 1 0 1
18 Jeff Heath 1939-07-25 CLE PHA W 12-8 2 2 1 2 1 1 0 3
19 Ray Pepper 1936-08-08 (2) SLB DET W 10-5 2 2 1 2 1 0 0 1
20 Chubby Dean 1936-06-21 PHA CHW W 11-5 2 2 1 2 0 0 0 2
21 Harlin Pool 1934-06-30 CIN STL W 11-4 2 2 2 2 0 0 0 2
22 Pete Scott 1927-05-21 (2) CHC BRO W 11-6 2 2 1 2 1 0 0 2
23 Harry Rice 1925-04-27 SLB DET W 10-8 2 2 1 2 0 0 0 0
24 Larry Gardner 1922-08-16 CLE PHA L 9-10 2 2 1 2 0 0 0 2
25 Larry Woodall 1922-07-07 (2) DET WSH W 11-9 2 2 2 2 0 0 0 1
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 4/20/2011.

This list does not include all the pinch-hitters with 2-hit innings; if a guy later played in the field, he wouldn't make the list. But Eric Hinske is only the 25th guy (since 1919) to appear only as a pinch hitter and record two hits. He's also only the 7th such player to have a homer among his 2 hits, and only the 2nd Brave to do it (after Julio Franco). Pretty cool.

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