Rollins ties Phils' all-time hits mark at 2,234
Shortstop, who shares top spot with Schmidt, hopes to break record at home
PHILADELPHIA -- Jimmy Rollins has something special he wants to share with Phillies fans.
Rollins is one hit shy of setting the Phillies' all-time record, and he would like to accomplish that historic feat this weekend at Citizens Bank Park.
"That's something I did want to do at home," Rollins said Friday night after tying Hall of Famer Mike Schmidt's franchise mark of 2,234 hits with a leadoff double in the ninth inning.
"A couple years ago, I reached 2,000 hits in Cincinnati. I told my wife I really didn't care where that happened. But when the hits record comes up, I would like to be at home. I was raised here -- professionally, obviously -- played every single game in a Phillies uniform, and it's something that I want to share with the people of Philadelphia. They've been there. They've cheered. They've come out and put on a good show for five straight years, and it's something I want to share with them also."
Rollins has enjoyed some memorable hits during his 15 seasons with the Phillies. He'll certainly remember Friday's double, which garnered a standing ovation and started a rally that eventually came up short in a 2-1 defeat to the Chicago Cubs. That baseball has been set aside for decoration and safekeeping. Another keepsake is on the horizon, though the veteran isn't focused solely on personal achievements at the moment.
"I'm waiting right along with everyone else," Rollins said. "It's been fun, though. Best part of the last four days, honestly, we've played some good baseball. We haven't got a lot of hits in some of the games, but we found a way to win. Tonight [that] wasn't the case, but I like the way we've been going out and handling our business, and getting hits is part of it. It's nice to do it in a winning fashion, so hopefully tomorrow's the day and we get the win."
Rollins says he doesn't remember the exact date in which he started to realize Schmidt's record was in reach. He figures it was sometime last season, and he says it was likely brought to his attention by former manager Charlie Manuel.
"If you're around long enough and you're healthy long enough and you're a good enough player, you will accomplish some pretty cool things," said Rollins, who brings an eight-game hitting streak into Saturday's game.
So now that Rollins has finally tied Schmidt's mark, what does it mean to the 2007 National League Most Valuable Player?
"It means I need some more hits," he said.
Perhaps that next hit will come this weekend. If it does, Rollins will get his wish and Phillies fans will join him in an incredible moment.