Tejada goes long way to keep promise
Astros shortstop comes through after telling boy he'd homer
HOUSTON -- When he came to the plate in the sixth inning Friday night, Miguel Tejada wanted more than anything to keep his promise to 8-year-old Jacob Scott, a muscular dystrophy patient the Astros shortstop met at a luncheon hours earlier.
Tejada promised Scott he would hit a home run for him that night, and it came through with a home run off Milwaukee's Carlos Villanueva in Houston's 7-4 victory at Minute Maid Park.
"[He's] possibly the next Nostradamus," teammate Lance Berkman said of Tejada.
As Scott looked on, Tejada circled the bases.
"I was so excited," Tejada said. "I was excited when I hit the home run. I know it's hard to promise someone a home run and then hit it. Today, when I went to lunch with this kid, I wanted him to be happy."
Since Tejada and his teammates hit five homers on the night, Citgo will donate $10,000 for each -- as well as another $5,000 for the Astros victory -- to fight muscular dystrophy. Citgo will also donate $10,000 to the Muscular Dystrophy Association for every homer the Astros hit on Sept. 13 vs. the Cubs, and $5,000 if they win.
"Super, that is terrific," Astros manager Cecil Cooper said. "What a night to break it out."
Cooper was unaware of his shortstop's promise to Scott until after the game.
"But nothing he does these days surprises me," Cooper said. "He has really been playing well defensively, and his offense has really been a big key for us."
Tejada's teammates were pleased to raise money for a worthy cause.
"You can't ever know what those families go through unless you have a child that's been afflicted with something like that. It's very hard to put yourself in their position," Berkman said. "Any small thing that anybody can do to help alleviate some of that burden, it's not just beneficial, it's what we're supposed to do.
"That's a big part of our industry -- entertainment, especially -- when you can entertain kids who are not as fortunate and don't have their health is a good part of what we do."
That Tejada would be moved to help the child wasn't surprising. But promising a home run, and then delivering?
"That's pretty amazing," Astros right fielder Hunter Pence said. "Miggy's that kind of guy. He's a great ballplayer, a great guy. What can you say? That's unbelievable."
After the game, Tejada met Scott outside the Astros' clubhouse.
"I gave him a bat," the smiling shortstop said. "He's happy."
Jim Molony is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.