Veteran Adrian Beltré has become the center of attention in Major League Baseball after being only two hits to reach the 3000 mark, something that never crossed his mind.
Since last night, he is closer to the mark, reserved for the great masters of the bat, after reaching number 2,2997 and 2,998 in the match that his team of the Texas Rangers won 8-2 against the Baltimore Orioles .
Beltré admitted that he just wanted to do his best, consistently perform and be respected in the baseball world.
In his early years in the majors, he never thought of historical marks and less that he could reach the undisputed 3,000.
“It never crossed my mind to be in a situation like the one I am now,” Beltre said. “I would lie if I said otherwise. I just wanted to be a good ballplayer … and when you play for a long time, the stats pile up.”
Beltré, 38, 20 as a professional in the majors, would become the 31st player in history to reach the mark of 3,000 hits, but the first Dominican to do so.
“It is a further pride to be able to give my country another brand in the Major Leagues, where we have always left it at the top with the class provided by the Dominican players,” said Beltre.
While the last player who got it in the majors was another foreign player, the Japanese veteran Ichiro Suzuki of the Miami Marlins.
The next will be without discussion Beltre, winner of five Golden Gloves, who hit his first hit as a 19-year rookie with the Los Angeles Dodgers on June 24, 1998, four after the team signed him as a teenager In Santo Domingo.
“Since then, years have passed, but my spirit and enthusiasm for the ball game is the same or even greater, because now I enjoy it much more,” said Beltre. “Although of course the physicist is no longer the same”.
This is the seventh season of Beltre with the Rangers, the team with which he finally disputed a World Series, title that still has yet to achieve.
“You can realize how much your team loves and sports by seeing the level of intensity it maintains,” said Buck Showalter, an Orioles rider. “He has to be elected to the Hall of Fame in the first round of voting, no one can question his contribution and class.”
Beltré could reach 3,000 hits the same weekend that the Rangers’ former manager, Ivan Rodriguez, will be exalted to the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown.
The veteran slugger of the Watchers possesses manias in the game, as for example does not like that his companions in the celebrations of good hits they touch the head, in addition he himself asks that the umpires decide if he reached to stop a swing, and in more Of one occasion he has hit a home run with one knee on the ground.
But above all, he is an exceptional professional who loves the sport, where he has an average of .286 in his career, with 454 home runs, 1,607 RBIs, 1,454 scores, 604 doubles.
Beltré has led the league in the categories of homers, hits and doubles.
After missing his first 51 games this season with a calf injury, Beltré leads his team with a .307 average, plus nine home runs and 34 RBIs in 48 games.
“He plays with that relaxed intensity that you want to see in every player, he’s very focused, but he’s also very confident and confident that he will be very good in every situation,” said Los Angeles Angels’ Mike Scioscia. “And he certainly enjoys being on the ground.”
Scioscia saw those same characteristics when he was still in the Dodgers’ organization and first saw Beltre as a 15-year-old teenager in the Dominican Republic, and then through his minor.
“I think you marvel at the consistency of their performance for so long, and you know it takes a lot to be good for so long,” reiterated Don Mattingly, manager of the Marlins.
George Brett and Wade Boggs, both members of the Hall of Fame, are the only players who played primarily in third base and reached 3,000 hits.
Beltre overcame Dave Winfield of the twenty-first spot on the historic list with 1,095 extra-base hits, and also displaced Carl Ripken Jr. of the fifteenth historic place with his 604 doubles.