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Craig Biggio

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Craig Alan Biggio

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[edit] Biographical Information

Craig Biggio (pronounced BIDGE-ee-o) retired at the end of the 2007 season with the longest term of service with the same club in Major League Baseball. He had played with the Houston Astros since 1988, beginning as a catcher, but switched to second base during the 1992 season. He remains the only player in baseball history to be named to an All-Star Game as both a catcher and a second baseman. He would later also play two seasons as the team's centerfielder. At the time of his retirement, he had played 20 seasons with the same team.

Biggio was orginally signed as a 1st round pick in the 1987 amateur draft by the Astros and scout Clary Anderson. He made his major league debut just over a year later.

Craig Biggio-2303.jpg

In 1998, Biggio became the first player after Tris Speaker to hit 50 doubles and steal 50 bases in a single season. In 2005, he became the modern all-time leader in being hit by pitches, with 273, breaking Don Baylor's previous record of 267. Although Biggio is the modern leader, the all-time leader is Hughie Jennings with 287. Biggio fell just two short of that mark. Biggio is just one of three players all time with more than 2,500 hits, more than 500 doubles, more than 400 stolen bases and more than 250 home runs. The others are Barry Bonds and Rickey Henderson. Biggio also is the all-time National League leader in leadoff home runs, with 53.

While the public did not think of Biggio as a big star, it is almost certain that he will get into the Hall of Fame. Every player with his level of runs scored (1844) and every player with his level of doubles (668) is in the Hall of Fame. He is the all-time career leader in doubles among right-handed hitters. Although he has never won an MVP award, he finished in the top 5 twice. Biggio got his 3,000th hit on June 28, 2007 and 3,000 hits virtually assures him admission to Cooperstown. Biggio became the first player to reach 3,000 career hits during a five-hit game (Derek Jeter matched that feat in 2011). Known for his hustling style, Biggio was thrown out trying to stretch one single into a double that day. It sparked the usual slew of articles after a 3,000th hit - some people saying that the old-time cut-offs for the Hall of Fame were now meaningless while others commented on how unappreciated and unrecognized Biggio had been. The first set of boilerplate articles got a boost because Frank Thomas hit his 500th home run on the same day.

The most similar player to Biggio through age 40 was Joe Morgan, with the others in the top five being Paul Molitor, Cal Ripken, Brooks Robinson, and George Brett.

Biggio was the top vote-getter among candidates on the BBWAA ballot for the Hall of Fame in 2013; he received 388 votes, representing 68.2% of all ballots. As 75% was required for election, no one was elected that year. In 2014, he finished fourth on the ballot behind three first-timers who were elected (Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and Frank Thomas), but a mere two votes shy of election: he received 427 of 571 votes, with 429 needed for election.

Since 2008, Biggio has been Special Assistant to the General Manager for the Astros (as of 2013).

Biggio's son, Cavan Biggio, was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in the 29th round of the 2013 amateur draft.

[edit] Notable Achievements

  • 7-time NL All-Star (1991, 1992 & 1994-1998)
  • 4-time NL Gold Glove Winner (1994-1997/2B)
  • 5-time NL Silver Slugger Award Winner (1989/C, 1994/2B, 1995/2B, 1997/2B & 1998/2B)
  • 2-time NL Runs Scored Leader (1995 & 1997)
  • 3-time NL Doubles Leader (1994, 1998 & 1999)
  • NL Stolen Bases Leader (1994)
  • 20-Home Run Seasons: 8 (1993, 1995, 1997, 1998, 2001 & 2004-2006)
  • 100 Runs Scored Season: 8 (1995-1999, 2001, 2003 & 2004)
  • 200 Hits Seasons: 1 (1998)
  • 50 Stolen Bases Seasons: 1 (1998)

[edit] Records Held

  • Hit By Pitch, career (since 1900), 285

[edit] Further Reading

[edit] Related Sites

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