Craig Biggio says goodbye in Astros' 3-0 win over Braves

The retiring Biggio doubled in his first at-bat and scored in
the first inning of his final game today as the Houston Astros beat
the Atlanta Braves 3-0 before a record crowd at Minute Maid Park.
Biggio, 41, who played his entire 20-season career in Houston,
became the 27th player to reach 3,000 hits on June 28 and announced
his retirement a month later. He will leave as the franchise's
all-time leader in games, at-bats, hits, doubles and total bases.
Chipper Jones, who came into the game trailing Matt Holliday by
one point in the batting race, went 0-for-3 to fall to .337.
The weekend series with Atlanta was a three-day tribute for
Biggio, with fans packing the park for one last glimpse at the
franchise's most beloved all-time player. His final game drew
43,235, the largest crowd in the park's 7-year history.
In the pre-game ceremony, the Astros presented Biggio with a
commemorative second base and a letter from baseball commissioner
Bud Selig.
The franchise also gave him a check for $3,059 _ a dollar for
every career hit _ for Biggio's charity, the Sunshine Kids, which
benefits children stricken with cancer.
The Astros and Braves joined fans in a minute-long salute before
Biggio took the microphone from owner Drayton McLane and addressed
the crowd.
He said -- quote -- ``People ask me why I play the game the way
I do. It's because you guys expect it.''

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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