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Castillo Extends Streak to 31

Baseball: He singles to become the 27th player to accomplish feat, but Marlins lose to Tampa Bay, 4-1.

June 17, 2002|From Associated Press

MIAMI — Another hit for Luis Castillo and another misfire by the Florida Marlins.

Castillo extended his hitting streak to 31 games but the Tampa Bay Devil Rays scored four runs in the final two innings Sunday to beat the Marlins, 4-1.

The Marlins fell back to .500 and missed a chance to gain ground on NL East leader Atlanta. Florida lost a series at home to its intrastate rival for the first time, scoring only seven runs in 32 innings.

"It's a bad stretch right now," slumping Marlin slugger Cliff Floyd said. "We have one bright spot."

That would be Castillo, who singled leading off the first inning to tie for the fifth-longest streak in the National League since 1900.

It's the 27th time a player has hit in 31 consecutive games.

The feat has been accomplished only eight times in the major leagues since 1949, most recently by Vladimir Guerrero of Montreal, who had a 31-game streak in 1999.

"I want to keep going," Castillo said. "But it's more important for me to win the game."

That didn't happen because Florida's bullpen failed to hold a 1-0 lead. The Devil Rays went 17 2/3 innings without a run until Steve Cox lined a run-scoring single with two out in the eighth against Armando Almanza (2-1) to tie the score at 1-1. Ben Grieve followed with a run-scoring double.

"This is the way I expected to win at the beginning of the year," Manager Hal McRae said.

"But I didn't think it would be this gut-wrenching to get a guy in."

The Marlins, who lost two of three to the Devil Rays, haven't been more than a game above .500 since May 19.

Castillo pulled a 1-and-1 pitch through the hole between third and shortstop off Wilson Alvarez in the first, improving his average against left-handers during the streak to .486 (18 for 37).

"It's tough to throw a strike against him," Alvarez said. "He's right on top of the plate. He swings at everything. He doesn't take pitches. Plus he can run."

Tampa Bay won a series for the first time since May 21-23 at Seattle, but Grieve said he didn't see it as a confidence boost.

"We're still 21 games under .500," he said. "I don't think one win is going to change anything."

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*--* Streakers Longest hitting streaks in major league history: Player Year Team G Joe DiMaggio 1941 New York (AL) 56 Willie Keeler 1897 Baltimore (NL) 44 Pete Rose 1978 Cincinnati (NL) 44 Bill Dahlen 1894 Chicago (NL) 42 George Sisler 1922 St. Louis (AL) 41 Ty Cobb 1911 Detroit (AL) 40 Paul Molitor 1987 Milwaukee (AL) 39 Tommy Holmes 1945 Boston (NL) 37 Billy Hamilton 1894 Philadelphia (NL) 36 Fred Clarke 1895 Louisville (NL) 35 Ty Cobb 1917 Detroit (AL) 35 George Sisler 1925 St. Louis (AL) 34 George McQuinn 1938 St. Louis (AL) 34 Dom DiMaggio 1949 Boston (AL) 34 Benito Santiago 1987 San Diego (NL) 34 George Davis 1893 New York (NL) 33 Hal Chase 1907 New York (AL) 33 Rogers Hornsby 1922 St. Louis (NL) 33 Heinie Manush 1933 Washington (AL) 33 Ed Delahanty 1899 Philadelphia (NL) 31 Nap Lajoie 1906 Cleveland (AL) 31 Sam Rice 1924 Washington (AL) 31 Willie Davis 1969 Dodgers (NL) 31 Rico Carty 1970 Atlanta (NL) 31 Ken Landreaux 1980 Minnesota (AL) 31 Vladimir Guerrero 1999 Montreal (NL) 31 Luis Castillo 2002 Florida (NL) 31

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