Zimmerman extends hit streak to 28 games

Zimmerman extends hit streak to 28 games

PHOENIX -- Third baseman Ryan Zimmerman extended his hitting streak to 28 games against the Diamondbacks at Chase Field on Sunday afternoon. The streak is the longest in baseball this season, and he is now halfway to Joe DiMaggio's record 56-game streak.

When told he was at the midway point, Zimmerman rolled his eyes and said, "Halfway, huh? There's a long way to go. I'm concentrating on [extending the streak] to 29. I really don't think about it or anything past the next game.

"It's so far away and so hard to do. I'm thrilled with what I've done so far. It's fun. It's something that I've never been through."

In the top of first inning, facing right-hander Max Scherzer, Zimmerman hit a smash that hit Scherzer's glove, but the ball went into center field for a single. It marked the 12th time Zimmerman was able to extend the streak in his first at-bat.

"I'm trying to get a hit every at-bat, but I can't explain it," he said. "I have a good approach. I've been good at sticking with it. That's the important thing. I'm not getting away from it. I'm trusting it."

Zimmerman did more than just get a base hit. He had an RBI single off right-hander Esmerling Vasquez in the sixth inning. He also made a nice diving play against Chris Young two innings earlier.

Josh Willingham feels that Zimmerman can get close to DiMaggio's record after seeing him extend the streak to 27 games in his last at-bat on Saturday.

"He hit the big home run that not only extended the streak, it helped us win the ballgame, so that is the kind of player that he is," Willingham said. "I'm not going to put it past him, for sure. I'll be rooting for him."

Said outfielder Adam Dunn, who has been sharing the spotlight with Zimmerman because of his monster home runs: "It's impressive to get a hit. It's not just one, but it seems like he gets two or three every game. It's one of the more amazing things since I've been around in this game."

During the streak, Zimmerman is hitting .364 [44-for-121), with six home runs and 21 RBIs.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.