World Series memories: Larsen's perfect game | Gibson's hobbled home run | Mays' over-the-shoulder catch | Podsednik's walkoff HR | Mazeroski's walkoff HR | Koufax's clutch shutout | Carter's series-ending homer | Gibson fans 17 | Bay Area earthquake | Reggie's three homers
For this installment of our ongoing series, we don't have to go back far. It was just last year, in Game 1 of the 2012 World Series. Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval went nuts, going 4-for-4 with three homers and four RBI.
The video evidence:
This was rare on so many levels.
First of all, the only three men who had previously hit home runs in a World Series game were Hall of Famers Babe Ruth, Reggie Jackson and likely Hall of Famer Albert Pujols. Sandoval is a nice player, but he's not headed to Cooperstown.
Next up, we have the rarity that is hitting two homers off Tigers ace Justin Verlander. Only 30 times in the regular season -- in 266 career starts -- has he even allowed an opposing team to take him deep twice in a game. Aside from Sandoval's game, Verlander has only allowed an opposing team to hit two homers off him twice and both of those instances came all the way back in 2006.
Further, this is only the sixth time in Verlander's career (281 regular-season and postseason starts) that he gave up two home runs in the same game to the same player. The other five:
•Nick Swisher; April 18, 2006
•Carlos Quentin; April 22, 2011
•Shelley Duncan; Sept. 7, 2011
•Desmond Jennings; June 29, 2012
•J.J. Hardy; June 1, 2013
So Sandoval joined several elite lists with his huge Game 1. He'd go on to win World Series MVP as the Giants swept the Tigers in four games.