Hey, we finally have a big occasion again for this feature. On this day 19 years ago, Pete Incaviglia drove in seven runs as the Astros beat the San Francisco GIants 15-7 at the Astrodome.
Incaviglia, of course, was already semi-famous for what he did in college and for forcing Major League Baseball to drastically alter the draft. He was drafted No. 8 overall in the 1985 Rule 4 draft by the Montreal Expos. Pete Incaviglia did not want to play for the Montreal Expos. Since this was right around the same time that John Elway forced his way from the Colts to a better team in Denver, Incaviglia tried to do the same thing.
Inky refused to sign with Montreal, so the Expos worked out a trade with the Texas Rangers, sending Jim Anderson and Bob Sera to Montreal. That was good enough for Inky, as he signed the same day the trade was agreed upon, November 2.
It's safe to say his career didn't pan out like he expected. After hitting 100 home runs in three seasons at Oklahoma State, including setting the single-season college record with 48, Incaviglia didn't spend a day in the minor leagues, debuting with Texas to open the '86 season.
He even hit 30 home runs in his rookie year, but hit just .250/.320/.466 with a league-hihg 185 strikeouts. That was the high-water mark for him, though, as he never hit 30 or more home runs in a season again. He finished with some higher slugging percentages, but always struck out a ton. When he became a free agent after the 1990 season, the Rangers parted ways with him and Inky went to Detroit.
He only lasted a year with the Tigers before signing with Houston, where he also spent just one season. Incaviglia hit .266/.319/.430 for Houston that season, hitting 11 home runs and striking out 99 times in 379 plate appearances. He signed with the Philadelphia Phillies in the off-season and wouldn't come back to Houston until the 1998 season, when he was signed mainly for minor league depth, but did appear in 13 games for the Astros.
He also teamed up with Casey Candaele, Lance Berkman, Richard Hidalgo, Carlos Guillen, Mitch Melusky, Daryle Ward, Scott Elarton, Freddy Garcia, John Halama and Bob Milacki to win the Pacific Coast League title, as the New Orleans Zephyrs beat Calgary in five games.
Oh, right, we were talking about an Astros game. Incaviglia hit two home runs in this one, a three-run homer in the third inning and a two-run homer in the fifith. He also hit a two-run double in the bottom of the eighth, finishing off his seven RBIs. Only four players in Astros history have had at least seven RBIs in a game, including Jeff Bagwell, Rafael Ramirez and J.R. Towles.
Here is a graphic replay of the game, thanks to Back to Baseball.