Dallas Sports History: A-Rod’s 300th Homer

NEW YORK - CIRCA 2001: Alex Rodriguez #3 of the Texas Rangers is down and ready to make a play on the ball against the New York Yankees during an Major League Baseball game circa 2001 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City. Rodriguez played for the Rangers from 2001-03. | Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images

Alex Rodriguez’s career included just three seasons with the Texas Rangers, but one very significant moment occurred with the team early in the 2003 season.

On April 2, 2003, at 27 years and 249 days old, A-Rod launched a ball off of Los Angeles Angels (then the Anaheim Angels) pitcher Ramon Ortiz into the stands in right-center field, becoming the youngest player in MLB history to slug 300 home runs.

According to Baseball Reference, Rodriguez still holds the honor 21 years later.

“Alex driving it to right-center, could it be?” broadcaster Josh Lewin’s call began. “Number 300 for Alex Rodriguez!”

The fans in the stands threw the ball back onto the field, and as it sat in the outfield grass, Lewin quipped, “Well, someone just threw back thousands of dollars right there on eBay.”

The Rangers would lose the game 11-5, dropping to 1-2 on the season.

That season was A-Rod’s third and final year with the club as he was traded to the New York Yankees the following offseason. The team finished 71-91 in his final year in Texas, but the 14-time All-Star won his first of three American League MVP awards after hitting .298 with 47 home runs and 118 RBIs.

He finished his three-year stint in Texas with a .305 batting average and 156 home runs, but the Rangers were never able to win more than 73 games in any season with the Hall-of-Famer on the roster.

Of course, Rodriguez would go on to play many more seasons in the MLB, winning a World Series with New York in 2009 and finishing his career with 696 home runs — the fifth-most in MLB history behind Barry Bonds, Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth, and Albert Pujols.

Parts of his career and many of his accomplishments have been marred by the steroid era and his admitted use of performance-enhancing substances, but he still gave fans of all the teams for which he played plenty of memories throughout the years, and this was definitely one of his more memorable moments as a Ranger.

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