Hamels 77th player to reach 2,000 strikeouts

Rangers left-hander gets to milestone with K of Mariners' Martin

Hamels 77th player to reach 2,000 strikeouts

SEATTLE -- Rangers pitcher Cole Hamels recorded his 2,000th strikeout in the third inning during his start against the Mariners on Sunday. Texas won, 6-4.

Hamels reached the milestone by striking out outfielder Leonys Martin in a scoreless game. He is the 77th player in Major League history to strike out 2,000 hitters and the seventh active player. He joins CC Sabathia, Bartolo Colon, Felix Hernandez, Jake Peavy, John Lackey and Justin Verlander.

"I knew I was close. I've got some pretty good company with guys like Verlander and Hernandez," Hamels said. "I'm sure Clayton Kershaw will be there soon. It's been pretty fun to pitch with those kind of guys."

Hamels' first career strikeout came on May 12, 2006, against Felipe Lopez of the Reds in his Major League debut for the Phillies. Lopez was the second batter he ever faced. He also struck out the third batter: Ken Griffey Jr.

Hamels has struck out Dan Uggla (23) the most in his career. Giancarlo Stanton is next with 19.

T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.