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Rodriguez Is An Animal!


Just because Ivan Rodriguez passed a milestone, it doesn't mean that he's content.

On Saturday, Rodriguez became the first catcher in major league history to steal 20 bases and hit 20 homers in a season in the Texas Rangers' 8-7 loss to the White Sox. After he singled to lead off the third inning, Rodriguez stole second base and later scored on Juan Gonzalez's double.

"I think (20 steals) is good, but I want to keep going and steal 30 bases," Rodriguez said.

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Two American League catchers have stolen that many. Kansas City's John Wathan holds the record for most steals in a season with 36 in 1982. Chicago's Ray Schalk stole 30 in 1916.

"I always wanted to steal more bases," said Rodriguez, whose career-high had been nine thefts in 1998. "So, I worked on my speed in the offseason."

Rodriguez, 27, said the rigors of catching make the achievement that much more special.

"The position is hard on you every day," Rodriguez said. "All the squatting, it's tough."

His 24 home runs are also a career-high, surpassing the 21 he hit in 1998.

Rodriguez has started 102 games this year behind the plate, the most by any AL catcher.

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