Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 8/6/12

Justin Morneau became just the fourth Canadian-born player to hit 200 career home runs when he went deep twice Monday in the Twins' 14-3 victory at Cleveland.

After struggling through injuries in 2010 and 2011 -- two concussions, nerve damage in his neck and a weak wrist that required surgery among them -- the feat meant more to Morneau than it would have before he missed 81 games in 2010 because of a season-ending concussion.

"If you had asked me at some point last year if I would have even got to here, I wouldn't have been able to tell you for sure," said Morneau, who has 15 homers this year. "It's one of those things I'm able to appreciate. If it had happened (in 2010), or early the next year, I probably don't appreciate it as much as I do right now."

The Twins feted Morneau with beer and presented him with the historic home run ball, hit an estimated 348 feet into the right field bleachers off Cleveland reliever Josh Tomlin in the fourth inning. He joins Larry Walker (383), Matt Stairs (265) and Jason Bay (207) as Canadian-born major-leaguers to hit 200.

And it meant a lot to Morneau.

"I can tell you Walker's got 383 home runs, I know that," he said. "He's the one of the reasons I wear the number (33) that I do, and a player I've sought advice from in the past and look up to and consider a friend, but also someone I consider the greatest Canadian position player of all time. So if you can get in the company of only three other guys, it's pretty cool. It's pretty neat.

"I'm sure (Cincinnati's Joey) Votto will be up there soon, but it's really just a nice thing."

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