Michihiro Ogasawara recorded his 2,000 career hit in the 8th inning of today's game against the Hanshin Tigers.
With the bases empty and Hiroyuki Kobayashi on the mound for Hanshin, Ogasawara lined a single back up the box (almost hitting Kobayashi) for his 2,000th career hit. Ogasawara had gone 0-for-3 (fly out to short, strikeout looking, DP) in his first three trips to the plate.
Ogasawara is the 38th player in NPB history to achieve the milestone and the fourth quickest player at 1,736 games.
1st hit: 5/10/1997 off Takehiro Ishii (SEI)
1,000th hit: 7/24/2004 off Dae-Sung Koo (ORI) in 862nd game
1,500th hit: 9/15/2007 off Michito Miyazaki (HIR) in 1,288th game
2,000th hit: 5/5/2011 off Hiroyuki Kobayashi (HAN) in 1,736th game
Daily Sports has posted comments from Ogasawara:
You got your 2,000th hit...
I've been struggling lately so I'm really grateful to the manager for using me, my teammates, and the staff.
What were your thoughts after you got down to 1 hit?
It was on my mind. It isn't often so many cameras show up, so it naturally took over my mind.
What were you think when you got up to bat in the 8th?
We were down by one, so I was thinking about a hit, but I just wanted to get on base. I'm glad I was able to make good contact.
How did it feel when you made contact?
I felt I made good contact. When I saw the ball go between the second baseman and the shortstop, I confirmed my thinking.
It seems you shouted out "Yes!" at that time.
It was just part of the situation. I was glad to get on base. I also heard a breath of relief from everyone in the stadium and all of that sort of snowballed into me shouting.
The crowd when wild when you got the milestone hit.
I made me happy that it wasn't just the Giants' fans, but also the Hanshin fans that were cheering and clapping. That made me realize how big [2,000 hits] was.
You are the 4th quickest to achieve the milestone.
I'm sure it's fast, but things have been slow for me this year. It isn't like they'll let me get hits easily since we're all competing to win, so to be the 4th quickest means I must have done things right up to now.
What were the most memorable hits?
I guess my first hit and my 2,000th hit.
You achieved it in your 15th year.
I didn't get to this number all by myself. I'm very grateful to all my coaches / instructors, teammates, and staff.
Your also closing in on 400 [homers] as well.
I'll give it a shot, but I'm still a bit a ways from that. I just want to hit as many home runs I can that helps lead the team to a victory.