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In the first inning of today’s New York Mets-San Diego Padres game, Vinny Rottino hit his first career major league home run, a solo shot off Clayton Richard. In doing so, Rottino, who was born in Racine, WI, became the 87th Wisconsin-born major league player to hit a home run in the majors.
Rottino spent parts of three seasons with the parent Brewers club in 2006, ’07 and ’08 after signing with the team as an undrafted free agent in 2003. He made his MLB debut on September 1, 2006 with the Brewers. In his three “cups of coffee” with the Brewers MLB team, he had five hits in 24 at-bats.
Last year he had an eight-game stint with the Florida Marlins. This is his second call-up with the Mets this season.
Hall of Famer Al Simmons leads all Wisconsin-born players in home runs. Simmons had 307 career four-baggers playing for seven teams in a 20-year MLB career.
Here’s a look at the players born in Wisconsin who have hit the most home runs in the majors.
Home Runs, Player (last year in majors)
307 Al Simmons (1944)
213 Andy Pafko (1959)
163 Ken Keltner (1950)
135 Eric Hinske (active)
123 Joe Randa (2006)
117 Chet Laabs (1947)
116 Rich Reichardt (1974)
90 Mark Grudzielanek (2010)
87 Harvey Kuenn (1966)
87 Damian Miller (2007)
84 Fred Luderus (1920)
80 Joe Hauser (1929)
74 Ed Konetchy (1921)
63 Scott Servais (2001)
61 Fred Merkle (1926)
Note: Rottino is one of four Wisconsin-born players currently playing in the majors. Jason Berken is a pitcher with the Baltimore Orioles; Eric Hinske is a utility player with the Atlanta Braves; and, Jordan Zimmerman is a pitcher with the Washington Nationals.
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