Guilder Rodriguez gets first MLB hit after 13 seasons in minors, dad tears up (video)
Guilder Rodriguez has played 1,097 minor league games in his pursuit of realizing his major league dreams. And on Monday night, he notched his first big league hit after toiling in the minors for an astounding 13 seasons.
Rodriguez, 31, was called up by the Texas Rangers, one of just two organizations he has played for — the Milwaukee Brewers being the other –when the team expanded its roster, as he kept his nose to the proverbial grindstone.
And while the Rangers are playing out the string in a lost season, fans who turned up for Monday’s tilt against the Houston Astros at Globe Life Park in Arlington were treated to a heartwarming scene as Rodriguez, in his second MLB start, not only recorded his first big league hit, but his first RBI — a game-winning one at that — as two extra-special people in the stands cheered him on … and teared up.
Rodriguez’s father, Guillermo, flew in from Venezuela to watch his son play baseball for the first time in the States since 2004. At Guillermo’s side was Rodriguez’s wife.
And when the lifetime minor league notched his first hit, the fans cheered for the ballplayer, and then directed their applause at Guillermo, who clearly became overcome with emotion in light of the significance of what had just occurred, breaking down and tearing up a little as he hugged his daughter-in-law and many of the 28,717 fans in attendance applauded.
What a sweet moment. To think how long both Rodriguez and his old man have been waiting for that moment makes it obviously especially poignant.
“This is one of the best moments of my life,” said Rodriguez after the game and after he was doused with Gatorade by Elvis Andrus to celebrate his game-winning RBI, via an ESPN report. “My first big league hit, my first RBI, my father in the stands, my wife. This is my second-best moment, after my two daughters were born.”
(photo credit: Tom Pennington/Getty Images)