Former MLB slugger Steve Garvey edges ahead of Adam Schiff in California US Senate primary

Former Major League Baseball All-Star Steve Garvey has moved ahead of U.S. Rep. Adam Schiff in California’s U.S. Senate race, Garvey's team confirmed Wednesday morning.

Former MLB slugger Steve Garvey edges ahead of Adam Schiff in California US Senate primary

Major League Baseball legend Steve Garvey has edged ahead of U.S. Rep. Adam Schiff in California's U.S. Senate primary.

As of Wednesday morning, Garvey, a former 10-time MLB All-Star, led Schiff by an incredibly slim margin of just 4,801 votes with more than 5 million votes tallied – about 85% of expected returns.

"As California's votes are counted, it's clear that our message of unity, common sense, and compassion resonates across the state," Garvey said. "I am deeply honored by the trust and support shown in these preliminary results. 

Despite millions being spent against Garvey in the state's most expensive US Senate primary election, Garvey's trajectory is remaining competitive to finish in first place.

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"I'm energized by our campaign's momentum and ready for the challenge ahead," Garvey said. "I look forward to a spirited campaign on the critical issues facing us."

Schiff, one of the leading Democrats in the U.S. House, will face Garvey, a Republican, in November to determine who succeeds the late Sen. Dianne Feinstein. California also puts all candidates, regardless of party, on the same primary ballot, and the two who get the most votes advance to the general election.

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A Republican hasn’t been elected to represent California in the U.S. Senate since Pete Wilson in 1988, when he won re-election over Leo T. McCarthy. Wilson stepped down when he became governor of California in 1991 and appointed John Seymour to serve in his place.

Feinstein defeated Seymour in the state's 1992 election and held the seat until her death in September. Laphonza Butler was appointed to serve out the remainder of Feinstein’s term.

Garvey said his campaign is about bringing together Californians from all walks of life to address shared challenges. 

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"I will continue to listen, learn, and lead with compassion and work to build consensus on the real issues that matter to our communities. Thank you to everyone who believes in the California comeback, together, we will make that vision a reality," Garvey said. 

The race will not be finalized until all mail-in ballots are counted, including ballots postmarked last Tuesday. 

Fox News Digital's Kyle Morris and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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