Craig Biggio records his 3,000th hit in win over the Colorado Rockies

Written by: Cady Lowery

In 1988, Craig Biggio was 0-for-13 to begin his career with the Houston Astros. But almost 19 years to the day later, Biggio was anything but hitless.

On June 28, 2007, Biggio singled in the seventh inning off Rockies’ pitcher Aaron Cook, becoming the 27th player in Major League Baseball history to earn access to the prestigious 3,000 hit club.

Known for his perpetual effort, Biggio demonstrated this again on his 3,000th hit, attempting to stretch his single into a double. He was thrown out at second, but it didn’t matter. The 42,537 fans at Minute Maid Park in Houston erupted in applause for the man who gave so much to their city and its baseball team.

Biggio’s 3,000th was his third hit on the day. He ended the game with five singles, becoming the first player in MLB history to tally five hits in a game where he also reached his 3,000th.

But if Biggio had had his way in high school, his baseball career might not have even begun.

“In ninth grade, I didn’t want to play baseball. I was more into football. The baseball team was bad, and the season had started, and I wanted to quit. My father said, ‘You finish what you start,’” Biggio told Sports Illustrated in 1996.

Playing with intensity and toughness, the catcher-turned-four-time Gold Glove Award-winning second baseman gave all that he had to the game of baseball and the city of Houston.

Drafted by the Astros as the 22nd overall pick of the 1987 MLB Draft, Biggio became just the ninth player to record his 3,000th hit with one team.

His milestone was 20 years in the making, but Biggio’s teammates noted that the 42-year-old veteran worked just as hard as he did when he entered the league at the age of 22.

“I haven’t see nobody work as hard as that guy works,” teammate Carlos Lee told the Houston Chronicle in 2007. “As soon as he gets here, he’s doing stuff and preparing himself for the game. It’s just amazing the way he works.”

Lee hit a walk-off grand slam in the 11th inning of Biggio’s 3,000-hit game to lead the Astros to victory over the Rockies, making sure Biggio’s day ended on a high note.

"I couldn't have scripted it any better," Biggio told after the game. "As a baseball player, the way the fans treated me. ... I've said for a long time, I love these guys, I love this city, I worked hard here and they appreciated that."

The seven time all-star walked away from baseball following the 2007 season with 668 doubles, which is the most all-time for a right-handed batter. He is the only player to finish his career with at least 3,000 hits, 250 home runs, 400 stolen bases and 600 doubles.

Amassing 3,000 hits was never on Biggio’s radar, but showing up every day was.

“I lot of people, the minute they walk through that door think they have respect,” Biggio told the Houston Chronicle in 2007. “But respect is earned. It’s something you earn every day. You’ve got to work. Every day, all I do is look in the mirror and try to know I gave it everything I had.”

Biggio was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2015.

Cady Lowery was a public relations intern in the Frank and Peggy Steele Internship Program at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum

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