Golden sombrero

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In baseball, a golden sombrero is a player's inglorious feat of striking out four times in a single game.

Origin of the term[edit]

The term derives from hat trick, and since four is bigger than three, the rationale was that a four-strikeout performance should be referred to by a bigger hat, such as a sombrero.[1] The "Olympic Rings" or platinum sombrero applies to a player striking out five times in a game,[2] while a horn (after Sam Horn of the Baltimore Orioles, who accomplished the feat in an extra-inning game in 1991),[3] titanium sombrero or double platinum sombrero is bestowed upon a player who strikes out six times in a single game.[4]

The term was coined by San Diego Padres player Carmelo Martinez in the 1980s.[citation needed] and first appeared in print when Leon Durham was quoted as using it in 1984.[5] The term "Horn" for a six-strikeout game was coined by Orioles pitcher Mike Flanagan after Horn's six strikeout game.[6]


Sammy Sosa and Ray Lankford are the only players to hit for a platinum sombrero more than twice.[3][7] Only eight players have had six strikeouts, listed below.[3] All eight players who accomplished a "Horn" needed extra innings to do it; the record for strikeouts in a nine-inning game is five.[8]

On August 4, 2009, Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria went 2 for 6, recording a golden sombrero and 2 home runs. The second home run was a walk off home run. This feat was also accomplished by Brandon Moss of the Oakland Athletics on April 30, 2013 in a 19-inning game against the Los Angeles Angels.[9] They are the only players to record four strikeouts and two home runs (the second a walk-off) in a single game in the live-ball era.

In a 17 inning game on May 6, 2012, Chris Davis of the Baltimore Orioles had zero hits in eight at-bats as the designated hitter, including five strikeouts. He was also the pitcher of record in that game, awarded a win after pitching two innings as a relief pitcher, making him the first positional player from the AL to record a win since 1968.[citation needed]

On April 19, 2014 Mike Trout of the Los Angeles Angels went 0-4 with four consecutive strikeouts against Max Scherzer, giving him his first Golden Sombrero after playing in 353 games. [10]

On June 5, 2013, Seattle Mariners catcher Kelly Shoppach became the first player ever to strike out five times and record two hits. The Mariners lost to the Chicago White Sox in 16 innings.[citation needed]

On May 29, 2014, in a game against the New York Mets, Ryan Howard of the Philadelphia Phillies earned his 24th career Golden Sombrero, surpassing Reggie Jackson to take the all-time MLB lead.

On July 18, 2014 Colorado Rockies outfielder Carlos González struck out in each of his 5 plate appearances against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

On August 28, 2014 Cincinnati Reds outfielder Jay Bruce struck out in each of his 5 plate appearances against the Chicago Cubs.

On April 7, 2015 Oakland Athletics third baseman Brett Lawrie struck out four times in four plate appearances, striking out on three pitches each time against the Texas Rangers.The elusive feat is termed the Titus Andronicus Sombrero Maximus. Furthermore, Lawrie's fourth strikeout ended the game, with him representing the potential tying run.

On May 18, 2015 St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Randal Grichuk struck out 5 times in 6 plate appearances.

On May 29, 2015 San Diego Padres catcher Derek Norris struck out swinging in his first four plate appearances, then hit a walk-off grand slam, becoming the first MLB player to achieve a golden sombrero and a walk-off grand slam in the same game, in the modern era.[11]

On August 3, 2015 Colorado Rockies second baseman DJ LeMahieu "achieved" the rare platinum sombrero, going 0-5 with 5 strikeouts against the Seattle Mariners.

On August 19, 2015 Houston Astros catcher Hank Conger struck out 5 times against the Tampa Bay Rays, going 0 for 5 in 13 innings.

The record for strikeouts in a game in all of professional baseball belongs to minor league baseball player Russ Laribee of the Pawtucket Red Sox, who in 1981 struck out seven times in a thirty-three inning baseball game.[12] The record was tied on May 21, 2013 by Stockton Ports right fielder Dusty Robinson, in a 17-inning game against the Lake Elsinore Storm.

Major league players with four strikeouts or more in a game [13][edit]

Player Games Major Teams
Ryan Howard 27 Philadelphia Phillies
Reggie Jackson 23 New York Yankees, Oakland A's
Jim Thome 20 Cleveland Indians, Philadelphia Phillies
Adam Dunn 19 Chicago White Sox, Cincinnati Reds
Bo Jackson 19 Chicago White Sox, Kansas City Royals
Rob Deer 17 Milwaukee Brewers, Detroit Tigers
Jose Canseco 16 Texas Rangers, Oakland Athletics
Mark Reynolds 16 Arizona Diamondbacks, St. Louis Cardinals
Dick Allen 15 Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago White Sox
Andres Galarraga 15 Montreal Expos, Colorado Rockies
Dave Kingman 15 New York Mets, San Francisco Giants

Major league players with six strikeouts in a game[edit]

Player Date Innings Team Box score
Carl Weilman July 25, 1913 15 St. Louis Browns
Don Hoak May 2, 1956 17 Chicago Cubs [14]
Rick Reichardt May 31, 1966 17 California Angels [15]
Billy Cowan July 9, 1971 20 California Angels [16]
Cecil Cooper June 14, 1974 15 Boston Red Sox [17]
Sam Horn July 17, 1991 15 Baltimore Orioles [18]
Alex Gonzalez September 9, 1998 13 Toronto Blue Jays [19]
Geoff Jenkins June 8, 2004 17 Milwaukee Brewers [20]

Major League Players With No Golden Sombreros[edit]

It is assumed that home run and power hitters will inevitably earn a Golden Sombrero. Not necessarily - here's the list of players (all of which are either in the Baseball Hall of Fame, or still active) who have never achieved four strikeouts in a regulation game: [21]


  1. ^ "Baseball Reference - "Golden Sombrero"". 
  2. ^ Michael, Matt (April 9, 2005). "Extra bases". Syracuse Post-Standard. 
  3. ^ a b c Rob Neyer article at Baseball Nation
  4. ^ ESPN - More amazing stories to watch for - MLB
  5. ^ The Dickson Baseball Dictionary, third edition, p. 374
  6. ^ Tom Verducci article, Sports Illustrated, July 29, 1991
  7. ^
  8. ^ Baseball Almanac list of strikeout records
  9. ^ Jayson Stark,
  10. ^ Bertha, Mike. 'Iron Man' heckles Mike Trout. April 20, 2014. Retrieved July 10, 2015
  11. ^
  12. ^ Peter Gobis, in the Sun Chronicle
  13. ^ Ryan Howard extends K record May 27, 2015. Accessed May 28, 2015.
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^ Kaufman, Jeremy. When was [insert great player here]’s First Four-Strikeout Game? BIS Blog Retrieved July 10, 2015.

External links[edit]