Scott first Astros rookie to hit for cycle
Rare night includes a three-run homer and five RBIs
HOUSTON -- When the Arizona Diamondbacks convened for a meeting to go over Astros hitters prior to Friday's opener at Minute Maid Park, they didn't spend a lot of time talking about Luke Scott.
Surely, they were more concerned with the likes of Craig Biggio, Mike Lamb and Lance Berkman. Scott -- a bench player, a rookie, an outfielder who's been in the big leagues for two weeks -- didn't garner a lot of attention from the D-Backs.
"Who is this Scott guy?" laughed D-Backs outfielder Luis Gonzalez. "He was off the radar, and now he's on that radar. He ain't flying low anymore after today."
That's what hitting for the cycle will do for a player. Scott homered in the fourth, tripled in the fifth, doubled in the seventh and singled in the 11th to become the first Houston player to hit for the cycle since Craig Biggio did so in Colorado on April 8, 2002. In terms of rookies, Scott's cycle was a franchise first.
"We couldn't get that guy out," D-Backs catcher Johnny Estrada said. "We threw him everything and the kitchen sink today. He was just spitting on the bad pitches, being patient up there and hitting the ball all over."
"It's a pretty awesome feat to think about," Scott said. "It's a great blessing. I enjoyed it, but I would have enjoyed it more if we had won."
The Astros' clubhouse was subdued following their 8-7 loss in 11 innings to the Diamondbacks, Houston's ninth loss since the All-Star break. It dulled what would have been considered a banner night for the offense, led by Scott, who set a career high with four hits and five RBIs and hit his first Major League home run.
"It's tough," Scott said. "We're in the middle of a Wild Card race. We've been struggling a little bit. Every game's important. Individual accomplishments are great, but the bottom line is we need to win."
A sellout crowd of 43,201 chanted "Luuuuuuuuuuuuuuke" each time Scott came to the plate, and four out of six times, he delivered. After his double, Scott admitted he knew he needed just a single for the cycle -- but even if it hadn't occurred to him, the fans were on their feet with the reminder.
"It gives you a lot of energy," Scott said. "The hair stands up on your arms and the back of your neck. Basically, it's a lot of fun."
That said, he was somewhat regretful that he singled in the 11th. A homer would have tied it. Instead, he was stranded at first when Berkman, pinch-hitting for Brad Ausmus, grounded out.
Scott is the sixth Astro to hit for the cycle, joining Cesar Cedeno (1972, '76), Bob Watson (1977), Andujar Cedeno (1992), Jeff Bagwell (2001) and Biggio.
More importantly, it just may have earned him more playing time, as well as the respect of the opposing team.
"In our meeting we went over him briefly," said Gonzalez, who hit for the cycle at Minute Maid Park on July 5, 2000. "I guess tomorrow we'll go over him a little more."
Alyson Footer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.