Beltre sets record for hits by Dominican-born player
First-inning single boosts Rangers star past Guerrero for first place
OAKLAND -- Adrian Beltre, serving as the Rangers' designated hitter, achieved a significant milestone in Thursday afternoon's 7-2 victory with a first-inning single off of Athletics pitcher Sonny Gray.
Beltre's single was the 2,591st hit of his career. That is the most hits ever by a native of the Dominican Republic. He passed Vladimir Guerrero, who spent the final year of his career with the Rangers in 2010. Former Rangers second baseman Julio Franco is third with 2,586.
"It means a lot," Beltre said. "I had no idea what was going on until I was told in the middle of the game. To be up there with one of the greatest hitters I have ever seen in Vladdy, I'm proud of that."
Overall, Beltre is tied with Luis Gonzalez for 80th all-time. But since 1900, he is fifth all-time among players who were primarily third basemen in their careers.
"I never think about those kind of things," Beltre said. "I love the game, I love to play hard, but thinking about leading all Dominican players in hits, I never thought about it."