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Lance Berkman Biography

Lance Berkman of the Houston Astros is having an MVP calibur season.
Lance Berkman

Birthdate: February 10, 1976
Birthplace: Waco, Texas

So far, the 2008 MLB season has belonged to Lance Berkman of the Houston Astros! This Texas native is one of the top candidates for NL MVP!

Growing Up

Lance Berkman is Texas born and bred. His father started teaching Lance how to play baseball when he was two. When he was six, Lance's dad had him swinging bats on a tire that hung from a tree. Lance would take 50 cuts with each hand every day after school. The training made Lance a more powerful batter and also made him ambidextrous - meaning he could hit with both hands. After a successful high school career, Lance went on to play for Rice University, where he led the Owls to their first College World Series. He was also named the 1997 National College Player of the Year.

Astros Career

The Houston Astros did not hesitate to pick up the local star. They used their first round pick in the '97 draft on Lance. Lance dominated the minor leagues before being called up to the Astros in 1999. It didn't take long for Lance to prove he belonged. He had his breakout season in 2001, where he hit .331 and drove in 126 runs. That year he was an All Star and finished fifth in MVP voting. In his eight year Astros career, Lance was a four-time MLB All Star. He has a career batting average of .304 and has close to 300 home runs.

2008 Season

The 2008 season has been the best season of Lance's career so far. The switch hitter ranks in the top three in the NL in batting average, home runs, RBIs and runs. Lance was named the NL Player of the Month in May and is a strong candidate to win the NL MVP award.

Special Player

Lance has been often compared to former baseball great Tony Gwynn. He is a great hitter without having the classic body or swing. He is one of the best switch hitters of all time. He is also an underrated base runner and first baseman. Besides being a great ball player, Lance is also a great teammate and person. He is down-to-earth and a favorite with his teammates, media and the [KWLINK 8552]community.

Did U Know?

  • Lance Berkman is 6'1" tall and weighs 220 pounds.
  • Lance Berkman plays first base.
  • Lance Berkman played outfield when he started his MLB career.
  • Lance Berkman likes to ballroom dance. He was an alternate for Dancing With The Stars.
  • Lance Berkman and his wife Cara have three daughters together: Hanna, Carly and Katie.
  • Lance Berkman's nicknames are "Fat Elvis" and "The Big Puma".
  • Lance Berkman is scared of flying.
  • Lance Berkman's agent is his dad.
  • Lance Says...

    "My father always told me that to be successful at anything, whether it was baseball or tiddlywinks, you have to be willing to pay the price. You have to be willing to do more than the kid down the street if you want to be better than he is."

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    Kirsteeeeen
    Do you have an old tire you could start off practicing with? It helps you align your hands. I find it kind of hard to explain, but there are lots of great resources out there online if you search for them. :) To do a cartwheel stand in a lunge with your favourite leg (by that I don't mean you look at it and say "that's a nice leg" but that you favor that leg when doing things, you feel comfortable with it going first), knees bent slightly, and your arms straight up by your ears. Make sure your elbows are locked. You don't want to drop. Assuming you start with your right, reach forward with your right arm while kicking your left leg up at the same time. Your left hand should follow very quickly and as it touches the ground your right leg should also be off of the ground. You should pass through the handstand briefly and your left leg should reach the ground first with your right following it and you will finish in a lunge just as you started. Hand, hand, foot, foot. 1,2,3,4. There's a rhythm to it. Keep practicing and try to perfect not kicking around as you go.
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