ANAHEIM -- Dee Gordon racked up the 1,000th hit of his career on Saturday, and it was a big one as the Mariners’ second baseman sliced a two-run, bases-loaded single in the fourth inning of Seattle’s 6-5 win over the Angels.
Gordon, a two-time All-Star and the 2015 National League batting champ while with the Marlins, acknowledged that was a number he didn’t take for granted.
“Honestly, in 2012-13 I didn’t think I’d ever make it here, the way it was going for me,” he said, reflecting on his early days with the Dodgers. “It wasn’t going well. I was having a hard time trying to stay up and just to be able to do this is pretty awesome.”
On a day the Mariners blasted four solo homers, Gordon’s base hit loomed large as he drove an 0-2 curveball from Trevor Cahill down the left-field line to give the Mariners a 4-1 lead.
“That was a big hit in the game,” Mariners manager Scott Servais said. “We got a nice little two-out rally going there and he found a spot down the line. It’s hard to get 1,000 hits in this league. You have to be pretty good.”
Gordon, back at second base this season after an aborted attempt at center field in 2018, continued playing well defensively also, including a nice play to get Andrelton Simmons leading off the ninth to help Anthony Swarzak close out the win for Yusei Kikuchi.
“That was huge,” Servais said. “From where he came to make that play, those defensive plays have to be made on nights like tonight when the game is tight and we made ‘em.”
The 30-year-old Gordon had gotten off to a strong start this season, but was 2-for-21 over his last seven games before his milestone hit.
But Gordon has been hot on the road all year and now has a 12-game hitting streak in road games dating back to Sept. 21 of last season.. His .395 road average for 2019 -- coming into Saturday -- was fourth best in the American League. Teammate Daniel Vogelbach, who homered in the first on Saturday, led the AL with a .464 batting average on the road entering the game.
Gordon’s two RBIs lift his total to 13 on the season. All nine Mariners starters have driven in 12 or more runs in a balanced attack over the first 24 games.
“I’ll take the ribbies, for sure,” Gordon said. “But more importantly I’m just glad Yusei got his first win and I was able to contribute.”