Hanley Ramirez Collects 1,000th Hit Of His Big League Career!!!
ByJoe Capozzi, Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
CHICAGO — Shortstop Hanley Ramirez became the third Marlins player to reach 1,000 hits Friday when he slapped a single to left-center field in the ninth inning off Cubs closer Carlos Marmol.
“It doesn’t mean anything until you get to 3,000,’ Ramirez said following the 2-1 loss. “You’re on your way to 3,000, but I don’t think about that.’
Ramirez – who was thrown out on his milestone hit, trying to stretch the single into a double – might say he’s not thinking about 3,000 hits, but it’s hard for him not to. After all, his childhood idol – Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter – reached 3,000 hits just last weekend.
“I’m so happy for Jeter,’ said Ramirez, who wears No. 2 in honor of the Yankee captain. “Not everybody can do that. You just got to stay healthy.’
Ramirez is in the middle of his sixth major-league season. If he can stay clear of major injuries, he could play at least a dozen more seasons. But whether he can maintain the same hitting pace is another matter.
He’s batting fourth now. He batted first during the first three years of his career before going to the three hole in 2009 when he hit .342 to win a batting title.
Ramirez, batting .241, has 66 hits in 75 games this season. He had 163 hits last year and 197 in 2009. He had a career-high 212 hits in 2007.
“If he has a couple of years like he had previously, conceivably, yeah,’ manager Jack McKeon said of Ramirez’s chances for 3,000 hits. “He’s only 27. That’s not an easy task, 3,000 hits.’
Ramirez needs five hits to tie Jeff Conine for second place in hits in Marlins history. Luis Castillo is the franchise leader with 1,273.
“It’s a lot of work, a lot of hits,’ Ramirez said of his 1,000. He plans to give the baseball to his mother, who also has the ball from his first major-league hit – a single off Houston’s Roy Oswalt on April 3, 2006.