ARLINGTON, Texas — Lost in another frustrating loss by the Angels on Tuesday night, this one a 14-11, 10-inning defeat at the hands of the Texas Rangers, was a major accomplishment by second baseman Howie Kendrick.
With a single in the second inning and a two-run single to right field that highlighted a four-run eighth inning, Kendrick, 30, became only the ninth player in franchise history to reach 1,000 career hits.
“I know it may seem like a small amount, but not a lot of people get there,” Kendrick said. “I’m very happy about it. It means you’ve been up here for a while and have been pretty consistent.”
Kendrick is batting .301 with 11 home runs, 16 doubles, four triples and 45 runs batted in this season, his eighth in the big leagues after joining the Angels as a 22-year-old in 2006.
There is a chance his 1,000th hit may be his last with the Angels, who are 14 games behind Oakland in the American League West, have already traded reliever Scott Downs and third baseman Alberto Callaspo and are fielding numerous trade inquiries about Kendrick, who has a no-trade list of 12 teams.
“Whatever happens, happens — I don’t worry about it,” Kendrick said. “It helps that I went through this before when I was younger. You understand that it’s out of your control. The biggest thing is to stay consistent.”
Kendrick has been one of the team’s most consistent hitters over his career, his batting averages ranging from a high of .322 in 2007 to a low of .279 in 2010, but as good as he’s been, he knows he won’t come close to approaching 3,000 hits.
“Who knows if there will be any guys who get to 3,000 hits again,” Kendrick said. “Albert Pujols maybe? You have to play for a while to attain that mark. I think Mike Trout has a chance. He came up to the big leagues when he was 20. [Baltimore’s Manny] Machado could do it. Some of these guys coming up at 20 years old will have chance.”