They’re rivals but friends first and foremost.
Usually when a batter and pitcher come together in front of the plate it’s to throw punches, but not when it’s Adrian Beltre and Felix Hernandez.
Beltre and Hernandez have been AL West rivals for seven years now but they were teammates for five seasons in Seattle and are still the best of friends to this day. With Felix starting against the Rangers on Monday, one day after Beltre recorded his 3,000th career hit, the Mariners starter took a moment to pay his respects before Beltre’s first-inning at-bat.
This is just the latest installment in Beltre and Hernandez’s delightful on-field romance. It seems like they’re fooling around every time Texas and Seattle meet.
While Hernandez usually has the upper hand in the prank war, Beltre got the better of him in that first at-bat on Monday night, recording career hit No. 3,001 on a single up the middle.