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September 6, 2010

Omar Vizquel Sets Another Record

Omar Vizquel entered Monday's contest tied with Rafael Palmeiro (2831) and nestled between Harold Baines (2830) and Al Kaline (2834) on the all-time games played list.

He left with 2832 and now sits alone at 17th all-time for his career.

A quick scan of the 16 names ahead of him (Pete Rose, Carl Yastrzemski and Hank Aaron among others) shows that Vizquel has a long way to go until he sits atop the leaderboard.

But if you focus on that and the 5-4 extra innings victory by the "Pale Hose" you miss the true story. Forgotten by all (including Vizquel according to some reports) was the fact that the 43 year-old infielder has now played in the most games by any foreign born Major Leaguer.

More than Hall of Famers Tony Perez (2777) and Luis Aparicio (2601).

More than octogenarian Julio Franco (2527).

And now...more than the previous record holder Palmeiro.

"It's hard to believe through all these years and talking about playing so many games I look back on my career and it looks like I just started playing five years ago," Vizquel said to following the game. "All of a sudden you find yourself with a lot of games on you, a lot of hits, a lot of records and I'm feeling very proud because I never thought I'd be in the big leagues for this long. And it's been a very great road for me."

The 11-time Gold Glove winning Vizquel has made his fair share of noise in the last couple of seasons.

With a career fielding percentage of .985, Vizquel is head and shoulders better than Hall of Fame shortstop Ozzie Smith (.978). He is also the all-time leader in double plays made while playing shortstop.

On May 25, 2008, Vizquel became the all-time leader in games played at shortstop, passing the afore mentioned Aparicio. Currently, the two sit at 2687 and 2581.

And not to keep piling on Aparicio, but on June 25, 2009, Vizquel became the all-time hit leader among Venezuelan born player. As of right now...he is at 2784. Aparicio sits at 2677.

Is pretty safe to call Omar Vizquel a Hall of Famer, right? Let me know what you think!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

He's in!!!! no doubt about it!!!