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Delgado ties record with four homers

9/26/2003

TORONTO (AP) -- Carlos Delgado sure woke up in a big way.

The Toronto slugger took cold medicine and a nap before the
game, then hit four home runs Thursday night to become the 15th
player in major league history to accomplish the feat

Delgado connected in all four of his at-bats, leading the Blue
Jays over Tampa Bay 10-8. His first homer of the game was the 300th
of his career.

"I can't think of any other way to explain it, it just kind of
happened," he said. "It seems like everything you hit goes into
the air and goes out. I wish I could do it more often."

Delgado was the first player to homer four times in a game since
former Toronto teammate Shawn Green did it for Los Angeles on May
23, 2002, against Milwaukee.

Delgado was the fifth AL player to homer four times, the first
since Mike Cameron for Seattle on May 2, 2002, against the Chicago
White Sox.

Lou Gehrig, Rocky Colavito and Pat Seerey also did it in the AL.

Delgado's record-tying shot came leading off the eighth inning,
a long drive to center field that tied it at 8.

Delgado flipped his bat and his teammates threw up their arms
when he connected on a 2-2 pitch from Lance Carter to match the
mark.

"I was pretty fired up. I'm not going to lie to you," Delgado
said. "As you can tell with the bat flip. I didn't know what I was
doing. I was on Cloud Nine out there and enjoying it."

Once Delgado returned to the dugout, he took off his helmet and
acknowledged the cheers from the crowd of 13,408 at SkyDome.

Delgado said he wasn't feeling good before the game. He said he
had a cold and took antibiotics.

"I forgot about it," Delgado said. "I took a little nap
before the game. You can't predict what's going to happen in a
baseball game. It's definitely the best day in my baseball
career."

The All-Star first baseman was the sixth player to homer in four
straight at-bats in one game. Cameron also did it.

Delgado became the 98th player to reach 300 career homers with a
three-run shot off Jorge Sosa in the first inning.

The ball hit off Windows restaurant and bounced back into center
field. Delgado asked for the ball as he rounded the bases.

Delgado's solo drive in the fourth gave Toronto a 4-1 lead, and
he added another solo homer in the sixth off Joe Kennedy that tied
it at 6.

Delgado finished his big night with homer No. 41. The six RBI
matched a career high and he now has 141 RBI this season, setting
a team record.

"It was unbelievable. I'll always remember this," teammate
Vernon Wells said. "When he's going good there is no telling what
he'll accomplish. It's something I'll never forget."

Delgado got three of the balls, including the last one. He said
he would give the record-tying souvenir to his mom.

Toronto general J.P. Ricciardi said Delgado might have earned
himself the AL MVP award with this performance.

"Tonight might be the thing that just catapults him in front of
everybody else," Ricciardi said.

Overall, it marked the fifth time Delgado has hit at least three
homers in a game and his 36th multihomer game. His last three-homer
game came April 20, 2001, at Kansas City.

"It was a Herculean effort," Tampa Bay manager Lou Piniella
said. "It's only been done five times in the American League.
Delgado is capable of getting into those grooves."

After Delgado's last homer, Eric Hinske followed with a triple
and Bobby Kielty hit a go-ahead sacrifice fly. Mike Bordick then
homered to give Toronto a 10-8 lead.

Tampa Bay's Aubrey Huff hit his 34th home run, tying Jose
Canseco for the club record.

Huff's solo shot of Dan Reichert in the seventh gave Tampa Bay a
7-6 lead, but Reed Johnson hit an RBI single in the bottom half.

Tampa Bay's Carl Crawford had an infield single off Reichert,
stole second and scored on Rocco Baldelli's two-out single.

Trever Miller (2-2) pitched 1 1/3 innings for the win. Carter
(7-5) took the loss.

Julio Lugo homered in his fourth straight game for the Devil
Rays, who need to win one of their last three games at home against
Boston to avoid 100 losses for the third straight year.

The Devil Rays tied the game at 5 by scoring five runs in the
sixth on Lugo's solo homer off Pete Walker, Marlon Anderson's
two-run triple off Vinnie Chulk and Toby Hall's RBI single.

Game notes
Delgado surpassed his own club record of 137 RBI in 2000.
... Canseco hit 34 for Tampa Bay in 1999.