Cano's fourth home run ties LCS record

Cano's fourth home run ties LCS record

NEW YORK -- Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano tied the League Championship Series record with his fourth home run of the ALCS with a solo homer in the third inning of the Yankees' 7-2 win over the Rangers in Game 5 at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday.

With his solo blast off Texas left-hander C.J. Wilson, Cano became the 10th player to hit four homers in an LCS, joining Rangers center fielder Josh Hamilton, who also has four homers in this series.

But Cano remained humble after the game, as he said he hasn't even looked at his stats even though he's batting .421 with four homers and five RBIs.

"I feel good at the plate, but the bottom line is we just won the game," Cano said. "If you didn't win, it doesn't mean anything. So just go out there and win the game, you stay alive and just do anything to stay in the race."

It's been a fun race, however, watching both Cano and Hamilton, who are both top candidates for the AL Most Valuable Player Award and are continuing their amazing postseason play.

With their homer-fest, it's just the third time two players have each hit four homers in the same series, and it was last accomplished in the 2008 ALCS, when the Rays' B.J. Upton and Evan Longoria each homered four times against the Red Sox.

"It's two dangerous guys on both sides," Yankees center fielder Curtis Granderson said. "Both teams would be happy to have either one. Both teams are happy to have the guy that they have. You hear the constant MVP chants both here in Texas and in New York, and it's going to be interesting to see who gets it when it's all said and done."

Players who have hit four home runs in one League Championship Series:
Player Team Year Games
Robinson Cano NYY 2010 5*
Josh Hamilton TEX 2010 5*
Evan Longoria TB 2008 7
B.J. Upton TB 2008 7
Carlos Beltran HOU 2004 7
Albert Pujols STL 2004 7
Jim Thome CLE 1998 6
Jeffrey Leonard SF 1987 7
Steve Garvey LAD 1978 4
Bob Robertson PIT 1971 4
* in progress

Rangers manager Ron Washington has also been impressed watching the two superstars dominate the ALCS with their strong play.

"They're two pretty good players," Washington said. "Cano hits the ball as hard as anyone and this guy just drives line drives out of the ballpark. And those two guys are two guys that are difference makers, and they will probably be difference makers as long as we are playing."

Cano also became the 25th player to hit at least four homers in a postseason series, including the fourth Yankee, as Reggie Jackson launched five homers in the 1977 World Series while Hank Bauer hit four homers in the 1958 World Series, Lou Gehrig totaled four in the 1928 World Series and Babe Ruth smashed four in the 1926 World Series.

Cano's play certainly hasn't been lost on Yankees manager Joe Girardi, who moved Cano into the third spot in the order on Wednesday with Mark Teixeira out with a strained right hamstring.

"It's as good as it gets," Girardi said. "Robby has been big in our lineup all year and he has been big in the postseason. He's swung the bat extremely well, and it just seems like he's getting the barrel of the bat to the ball all the time."

Cano's shot came just two pitches after New York right fielder Nick Swisher hit a solo homer off Wilson to mark the first time the Yankees hit back-to-back homers in a postseason game since Game 3 of the 2000 ALCS, when Bernie Williams and Tino Martinez hit two consecutive homers against Mariners right-hander Aaron Sele.

Cano had previously homered in the seventh inning of Game 1 off Wilson, in the sixth inning of Game 2 off right-hander Colby Lewis and in the second inning of Game 4 off right-hander Tommy Hunter. All four of Cano's home runs have been solo shots.

Cano compared his recent streak when he began the season red-hot, but he also noted these are crucial games, as the club is trying to get to the World Series for a second straight year.

"I felt like that the first half of the season, but right now, just trying to focus more than the regular season, because here, you either win or go home," Cano said. "After we won the Series, we know what it feels like to go to the World Series and win a championship, and now want to go back again and just keep having fun."

Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.