Most players would be content with a three-hit game. But while it is impressive, it isn’t out of the ordinary for a good hitter.
Four-hit performances are a little less common and a little more attention-grabbing. But five hits in a game is a rarity, even more so when the feat is repeated more than once by a single player.
During the first half of the 2023 season, Luis Arráez of the Miami Marlins looked like he would make a run at the most five-hit games in an MLB season when he joined an exclusive list with the trio of games all within a single month.
We previously explored who has the most hits in a game, season and career. Now, let’s dive deeper and see who has the most five-hit games in a season and career in Major League Baseball history.
Most Five-Hit Games in an MLB Season
T-1. 4 games – 1922 Ty Cobb, Detroit Tigers
Cobb was the first to accomplish this feat in 1922 (the same year he surpassed a .400 BA for the third time). Like the previously mentioned Arráez, Cobb, a Triple Crown winner, recorded three (out of his four) five-hit games within a single month – and interestingly enough, all three instances were in an 11-day span.
T-1. 4 games – 1948 Stan Musial, St. Louis Cardinals
Musial made the cut in 1948 and ended up winning the MVP award that season for the third time. In his first five-hit showing, he helped lead the St. Louis Cardinals to a 13-7 win over the Cincinnati Reds and had five hits in six at-bats with two doubles, a home run, and four RBIs. Ultimately hitting 39 homers in ’48, Musial dominated other teams as well, including the Boston Red Sox, who were victims of his five-hit history-making twice that year.
T-1. 4 games – 1993 Tony Gwynn, San Diego Padres
Gwynn strung together the five-hit achievement four times in 1993, which was one of his less memorable seasons. That’s not to say it was a bad season by any means – he still won MVP and a Silver Slugger Award. But it’s hard to differentiate for a guy who hit over .300 in 19 out of the 20 years he played (his .394 batting average in 1994 is MLB’s highest since 1942).
T-1. 4 games – 2004 Ichiro Suzuki, Seattle Mariners
Ichiro joined the list most recently in 2004, the same year his 262 hits broke the modern-era record for most in a season. Despite his season batting average of .372 (the ninth highest since 1942), he was unable to lead the Mariners to the World Series – and is the only one of these four to never reach the Fall Classic.
T-5. 3 games
- 1921 George Sisler, St. Louis Browns
- 1923 Tris Speaker, Cleveland Indians
- 1929 Edd Roush, New York Giants
- 1930 Freddie Lindstrom, New York Giants
- 1932 Al Simmons, Philadelphia Athletics
- 1933 Heinie Manush, Washington Senators
- 1950 Eddie Waitkus, Philadelphia Phillies
- 1966 Luis Aparicio, Baltimore Orioles
- 1974 Jorge Orta, Chicago White Sox
- 1984 Don Mattingly, New York Yankees
- 1984 Dave Winfield, New York Yankees
- 1985 Keith Hernandez, New York Mets
- 1986 Joe Carter, Cleveland Indians
- 1997 Kenny Lofton, Atlanta Braves
- 2014 Charlie Blackmon, Colorado Rockies
- 2015 Yunel Escobar, Washington Nationals
- 2023 Luis Arraez, Miami Marlins (*ACTIVE)
Most Five-Hit Games in an MLB Career
1. 14 games – Ty Cobb
Over the course of his 24-year career, Cobb accumulated 14 five-hit games – the most of any player in MLB history. One of his most notable performances was in a win against the Cards in ’25, where he went 6 for 6, with three dingers and five RBIs. He was just a triple short of the cycle. Cobb’s Tigers won all but two of these games, taking down teams like the defending 1911 World Series champion Philadelphia A’s and Babe Ruth’s Yankees.
2. 10 games – Pete Rose
Considering he holds the record for most career hits in MLB history (4,256 – just above Cobb’s 4,191), it’s not a surprise Rose makes the list for most five-hit games of all time. The longtime Cincinnati Red (his 3,562 games played is also a record) had his last five-hit game in a loss against the Giants, just months before he retired in 1986.
T-3. 9 games – Max Carey
Tied at third with nine five-hit games is Hall of Fame inductee Max Carey, who led the National League in stolen bases 10 out of the 20 years of his career. In a 1922 close loss with the Pittsburgh Pirates against the New York Giants, he had six base hits and tacked on three walks and a trio of steals.
T-3. 9 games – Tony Gwynn
Once again, “Mr. Padre” makes the list, with nine games of at least five hits. Gwynn’s efforts paid off for San Diego, as it won all but one of these games. The 15-time All-Star had six hits in seven at-bats in one game, leading San Diego to an extra-inning 11-10 win Barry Bonds’ 1993 Giants.
- T-5. 8 games – Robert Clemente
- T-5. 8 games – Rabbit Maranville
- T-5. 8 games – Stan Musial
- T-5. 8 games – Al Simmons
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