Only 268 other players in Major League Baseball history had done what Placido Polanco had done.
But not many did it the way Polanco did last night.
In the 8th inning of the Phillies 5-1 win over Houston, Polanco took Astros pitcher David Carpenter deep to left-center field for his first home run of the season. It was also hit number 2,000 for Polanco.
One lucky fan (via PhilliesNation.com) got to share a piece of the history created from Polanco’s bat. Ryan McCoy of Pottstown, PA caught Polanco’s historic ball, and immediately gave the ball back to Polanco.
Polanco wasn’t going to let the fan walk away empty-handed, signing a bat for him (but with the wrong date on the barrel, as seen in the photo).
Polanco had been on a tear for the month of May after struggling through April. Polanco’s batting average jumped up to .281 after hitting only .250 through the first month of the season.
He can give thanks to his .327 average in the month of May (16-for-49). Five of his 16 hits this month are extra-base hits (four doubles, home run) after hitting only three doubles for the entire month of April.
Polanco’s power numbers are still down from his career averages, but that’s been expected with his seasoned age (36-years-old) and the elbow and hernia problems he had last season that killed his numbers after the All-Star break.
But Polanco has made a complete 180, contributing to the Phillies recent offensive success in May along with a scorching-hot Carlos Ruiz and Juan Pierre’s veteran ability to get on base.
Will Polanco get to 3,000? Doubtful. But the 2,000th ball will be a nice momento Polanco will cherish for the rest of his life that highlights an outstanding professional career.
Video of Polanco’s 2,000th hit.