Drew reaches 1,000 hits while belting 2 HRs
NEW YORK -- A baseball was waiting for Stephen Drew when he walked into the Yankees' clubhouse Tuesday night -- security head Eddie Fastook had made sure to track the souvenir down for him.
The milestone it commemorated though was one Drew had zero clue was coming.
"I had no idea. Literally, I just came in and Eddie came in, gave me the ball and said, 'Congrats.' It was 1,000 [hits]," Drew said after the Yankees beat the Nationals, 6-1, for their seventh consecutive win. "A pretty special moment, but I really had no idea about that."
Drew's 1,000th hit of his career came in the bottom of the third inning with both teams still scoreless. With no outs and the count 2-2, Drew belted his eighth home run of the season over the right-field fence to hand the Yankees a 1-0 lead. But he wasn't done yet.
Five innings later, he did it again, blasting another leadoff shot in the eighth to finalize the 6-1 score.
But with a .175 batting average, Drew's success comes on the heels of what has been a difficult season.
"It's a numbers game. In April, I did hit, had some great at-bats, and nothing [to show] for it," Drew said. "[I'm] trying to clear my head and give [myself] the best chance I have up there. I've played this game for a long time and trust myself."
Drew's adjustments have come at a pivotal time for the Yankees, who haven't won seven straight since September 2012. Manager Joe Girardi hopes Drew is on to something.
"His hits are extremely productive is the bottom line," Girardi said. "He's swinging the bat well and hopefully he's over that point where he's -- you know, when he hits the ball hard, they're hits."
With the two home runs Tuesday night, Drew tallied the fourth multihomer game of his career and the second of the season -- four days after the first when he hit a pair against the Angels on Friday.
He has four hits on this homestand that began Friday, and all of them are homers.
Perhaps his 1,000th career hit will be the most memorable of them all -- even if he was unaware of it at the time.
"It's special. Being able to play this game and playing it for a long time and being able to reach that milestone, it's special," Drew said. "The Lord's blessed with me being here as long as I have, and I'll remember that when I'm done playing. It's something you're going to look back on and just be thankful for."