Happy anniversary, Robin

Robin Yount gets his 3,000th career hit against the Indians in Milwaukee County Stadium in this Sept. 9, 1992 photo. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

Nineteenth anniversaries are not usually cause for celebration. In Robin Yount’s case, it just feels fitting.

Yount, whose No. 19 hangs in retirement high above Miller Park, cemented his place in the Hall of Fame on this date 19 years ago, when he dumped a seventh-inning single into right field against the Indians’ Jose Mesa at County Stadium. Yount became the 17th player in Major League history to reach 3,000 hits.

Yount was the third-youngest member at the time of that exclusive club, behind Ty Cobb and Hank Aaron. He collected his final 10 hits in a seven-game hitting streak that culminated with No. 3,000 on Sept. 9, 1992.

“It almost feels like you’re out there alone. It’s kind of a weird feeling,” Yount told MLB.com earlier this summer. “At least it was for me. I remember that we were in a pennant race the year I got mine and it was late in the year. I felt very uncomfortable because it seemed like the focus was on me, and I felt that it should have been on the team because we had a legitimate chance to win that division last year.

“I found myself getting caught up in it because everyone else was caught up in it. I’ll be honest — for me, it was a bit of a distraction. I can remember when I got within one or two hits, I got real angry at myself because I was distracted. I had a long talk with myself after one of those games, I don’t remember which one.”

When he got his milestone hit, longtime teammates Paul Molitor and Jim Gantner were the first to embrace Yount at first base.

“Robin, he was my closest friend on the Brewers. He was the most unselfish player that I ever played with,” said Molitor, who would join the club 13 years later. “So, to watch him be humbled by the attention of reaching that milestone, and to do it in Milwaukee, where he’s the most popular Brewer in history, it was emotional for me to see that.”

Molitor remembered Yount’s chase when he engaged in his own during the ’96 season.

“To see how he handled it helped me in understanding that it’s a moment to be enjoyed and not fought,” Molitor said.

“You get 3,000 hits because of longevity,” Yount said, “and I guess what I’m most proud of,”

My MLB.com colleague Todd Zolecki, a fellow New Berliner, told me last night that he was at Yount’s milestone game. I would love to hear your own memories of that night in the comments.

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9 Comments

I was there all 3 nights of that series. He got 1 hit in each game if I recall correctly. The atmosphere was awesome. I remember an Indian sitting in the outfield during the video tribute! I believe we ended up losing the game which really hurt as we were in the pennant race.

Yount was an amazing force to watch. Silent, but always made his presence known!

I was there! I was 9 and it is still to this day one of my BEST memories growing up. I’m a HUGE Yount fan. I was there with my entire family (mom, dad, 2 sisters) and we were sitting on First base side, just past the dugout, closer to right field and just under the overhang of the deck above us. I remember it is such detail! The excitment of the crowd was absolutley amazing! My dad picked me up so I could see because everyone was jumping up and down!! We still have ticket stubs and the newspaper from the next day! Amazing!

I was living in Grand Forks, ND at that time and bought tickets to that game about 3 weeks in advance, hoping it might be the one. We sat in the upper grandstand, 1st row behind home plate. On the pitch immediately preceding his hit, Yount fouled one back and the guy right in front of me (last row, upper box) caught it.

I was there with my mom, sister and grandma…just us girls! Such an awesome night! It was an honor to be a part of Robin’s special moment. I remember seeing a million flashes at every pitch, all of us just hoping to catch a shot of the big hit.

I had just graduated college in June and after my final “summer job”, was preparing to take a 4-month roadtrip west (from Brookfield), but wound up postponing it by several days when Robin got close. Went to three or four games in a row, with different friends every night, determined to keep going until Robin got it, and i can still picture that beautiful, opposite-field single like it was yesterday!! Then there was Ueck: “He’s done it! A base-hit for Robin!”

Though I wasn’t at the 3,000 hit game, I was at the post-World Series party at County Stadium when Robin rode his motorcycle around the warning track. He came out of the bullpen and the place went nuts. What a guy, and what a wonderful ballplayer. Robin Yount, for me, epitomizes everything that has always been good about the game.

What a night to remember! Electric atmosphere, County Stadium rockin’ with Robin. I was there with my husband, my 2 brothers and their girlfriends, my sister, and three guys from the neighborhood that I grew up with. We had been there for all three games and vowed that we would be there to witness history. When the moment finally came, I couldn’t hold back the tears. Everyone in the stands was going nuts giving everybody close to them high fives. I will never forget that night and so many others shared with family and friends cheering on the Crew. Robin Yount remains a class act that more major league players could learn a thing or two from.

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