Cards pitcher allows 4 HRs in row in MLB debut


CHICAGO — St. Louis Cardinals reliever Roel Ramirez became the first pitcher to allow four straight home runs in his major league debut when the Chicago White Sox hit him around in the fifth inning Sunday.

Yoan Moncada, Yasmani Grandal, Jose Abreu and Eloy Jimenez connected during a six-run inning, tying the big league record for consecutive homers.

Ramirez took the mound in the fifth with St. Louis leading 1-0. He struck out Luis Robert to start, but things went south quickly. After two singles, a caught stealing and a walk, Moncada smacked a three-run homer to right.

Grandal followed with another drive into the right-field seats, and then Abreu and Jimenez each homered to left.

Manager Mike Shildt replaced Ramirez with Seth Elledge, and he struck out Edwin Encarnacion on three straight pitches to end the inning.

Ramirez is among the players promoted by the Cardinals following a COVID-19 outbreak that stalled St. Louis’ season for 2½ weeks. The club returned to action Saturday with a doubleheader sweep over Chicago.

Ramirez, a 25-year-old right-hander, split last season between Double-A and Triple-A.

It was the 10th time in major league history a team hit four straight homers. The only other time the White Sox did it was on Aug. 14, 2008, against Kansas City, when Jim Thome, Paul Konerko, Alexei Ramirez and Juan Uribe connected.

The White Sox went on to beat the Cardinals 7-2 on Sunday.

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