Just 34 games into his collegiate career, freshman catcher JJ Schwarz on Tuesday accomplished something no player in the 101-year history of Florida Gators baseball had before when he smacked four home runs in a single game against the Stetson Hatters.
Schwarz, who entered Tuesday’s contest batting .277 with five homers and 30 RBI on the season, jettisoned the ball out of the park in each of his first three at bats. In his fifth turn at the plate, he rocketed a fourth ball over the McKethan Stadium wall, becoming the first Florida baseball player – and second Southeastern Conference player (Bill Sandry, Kentucky, 1982) – to crush four home runs in one game.
He finished the contest 5-for-6 with four home runs and 10 RBI as he smacked a two-run double in his final at bat in the bottom of the eighth. Schwarz, who upped his season average to .304 and dons jersey No. 22, led the Gators to a 22-2 victory. His four homers were part of seven total for the team, its most in a single game since 1998.
Schwarz is also the ninth player in program history to hit three (or more) homer runs in one contest, joining Mark Ellis (1997), Brad Wilkerson (1998), Greg Catalanotte (1998), Pat Osborn (2002), Ryan Shealy (2002), Brian Leclerc (2005), Preston Tucker (2009) and Tyler Thompson (2010). He is the first Gators’ player to blast three homers in three straight at bats since Tucker in 2009, and he also finished second to Tucker (11) in the school record book in runs batted in during one game.
Only two players in the history of NCAA baseball have hit more home runs in a single game than Schwarz – Marshall McDougal (six, Florida State, 1999) and Henry Rochelle (five, Campbell, 1985).
— Preston Tucker (@PrestonTucker25) April 8, 2015