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Castillo Runs Hitting Streak to 33

Baseball: Sixth-inning dribbler does trick to tie him with Hornsby in Florida's 2-1 victory.

June 20, 2002|From Associated Press

MIAMI — With two hits, a run batted in and a run scored, Luis Castillo beat the Cleveland Indians and tied Rogers Hornsby.

"Who?" Castillo said.

Even though his grasp on baseball history is shaky, he's creating some himself. Castillo matched Hornsby's 80-year record for the longest hitting streak by a second baseman, going two for four to make it 33 games in a row Wednesday night as the Florida Marlins defeated Cleveland, 2-1.

Castillo had a hand in both Florida runs. He was 0 for 2 before beating out a dribbler to the pitcher in the sixth inning, and he scored the tying run on Cliff Floyd's single.

His one-out single to right in the seventh drove in Preston Wilson.

"Luis took care of his hit," Florida Manager Jeff Torborg said. "I was thinking about the game. Then Luis took care of that too."

Castillo tied four players at 33 games in a row--Hornsby of St. Louis in 1922, Heinie Manush of Washington in 1933, Hal Chase of the New York Yankees in 1907 and George Davis of the New York Giants in 1893.

Only 15 players have had a longer streak, including only four since 1949.

"Tomorrow is a new day," Castillo said. "Four more at-bats. I start over."

The speedy leadoff hitter extended the streak when he topped a 1-0 pitch that pitcher Danys Baez fielded on the second hop between the mound and plate. Baez's hurried throw sailed over first baseman Jim Thome, and Castillo continued to second.

Official scorer Ron Jernick immediately credited Castillo with a hit and charged Baez with an error for allowing the runner to advance. TV replays confirmed the call, showing that Castillo reached first as the throw sailed past.

"I don't think his feet hit the ground," teammate Derrek Lee said. "He wanted it bad."

Castillo raised his average to .401 during the streak and .338 this season.

The game drew only 9,428, which is below Florida's season average of 11,220.

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*--* Hit Parade Longest hitting streaks since the New York Yankees' Joe DiMaggio had a record 56-game streak in 1941: Year Player G 1978 Pete Rose 44 1987 Paul Molitor 39 1945 Tommy Holmes 37 1949 Dom DiMaggio 34 1987 Benito Santiago 34 2002 Luis Castillo 33

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