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Five hits for history

So if you had to pick a National to be the first one to come up with five hits in a game, you would start with Nook Logan, right? And you also feel chilly when you are in hell, and you see wings on pigs, and you believe Dmitri Young will lead the league in triples next year.

How unlikely was Logan's 5-for-6 performance in last night's 11-6 victory over the Astros? Consider that, prior to last night, Logan had appeared in 288 major league games. Consider that, in that span, he had three hits 10 times - twice this year. He had never had four hits in a game. Consider that from June 1 through June 29, Logan had a total of five hits (in 28 at-bats).

I asked Logan last night if he had ever had five hits. "I don't think I've ever done it - ever," he said, and that includes Little League.

So no National had done this. But the incredible part is that not only had no National done it since the club moved to Washington in 2005, but no member of the franchise (read: the Expos) had done it since Mark Grudzielanek on May 8, 1998. That was 1,551 games ago.

Five hits is a nice benchmark from Logan, but it's not exactly like the 10 RBI Garrett Anderson had for the Angels last night. Consider that this season already, someone has had five hits 28 times (including two guys who had six hits in a game). Last year, it happened 24 times. So an average of slightly less than once a year for each team.

So how unlikely is it that a franchise would go nearly a decade without having a five-hit game? I mean, just in the last two years, 22 of 30 MLB franchises had a five-hit games (none for Washington, Toronto, Milwaukee, Pittsburgh, Kansas City, San Diego or Oakland). Texas's Michael Young had three five-hit games in that period by himself. In 2004-05, Ichiro Suzuki had four five-hit games.

Since Grudzielanek's game against Colorado - in which he went 5 for 5 with five singles, no RBI and one run scored in a 7-5 loss - there have been 293 five-hit games in the majors. No other team has had fewer than three in that time (Tampa Bay). In fact, 18 teams have had at least 10 five-hit games over that period. The Mariners - lead by Suzuki - lead the way with 18 of them, but the Phillies aren't far behind with 16, the Cardinals not far behind that with 15.

Among the current and former Nationals who have had five-hit games for other teams are Alfonso Soriano (with the Yankees, Rangers and Cubs), Felipe Lopez (Cincinnati), Marlon Anderson (Mets, Phillies and Dodgers), Cristian Guzman (Minnesota), Jose Guillen (Angels), Ronnie Belliard (Rockies), Dmitri Young (Tigers) and the immortal Deivi "We Hardly Knew Ye" Cruz (Giants).

What does this prove? Nothing. But Logan can now pass the mantle to the Pittsburgh Pirates, who now inherit the longest streak. Brian Giles had the Pirates' last five-hit game on July 29, 2000 against San Diego.

Read all about Logan's exploits - with quite a bit of Ryan Zimmerman thrown in - here. And Ryan Church had some interesting things to say in the notebook. And I'll have a chat at 1 p.m. today, so come one, come all.

Oh, and there was even the mini-minors notebook in the $.35 edition. And I forgot to mention maybe the most interesting thing in the minors, that Michael Burgess (the 49th pick in the draft) was among those promoted to short-season Class A Vermont from the rookie-level GCL Nationals.

I likely won't post until the chat, so join me there.

By Barry Svrluga  |  August 22, 2007; 3:23 AM ET
 
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