As well as Carlos Zambrano has pitched so far this season, his effort tonight in the Cubs' 12-3 win at Pittsburgh—7 IP, 2 ER, 6 H, 6 K, 1 BB—was hardly exceptional. The now 7-1 Zambrano's performance at the plate was another story. His four hits were a career high and marked the first time since 1964 that a Cub pitcher had collected four hits at the plate. Lew Burdette was the man with the magic bat in July of '64, going 4-for-5 in a 13-4 thrashing of the Giants.

Interestingly, just four years earlier, in June of 1960, another Cub pitcher, Don Cardwell, rapped four hits in an 11-5 win over the Braves.

I was surprised to see that according to the Baseball-Reference Play Index, since 1956, pitchers have managed the four-hit trick 29 times, and Arizona's Micah Owings accomplished it twice last year, in games just five weeks apart.

But I wonder if Micah Owings can snap a bat over his knee.


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