David Ross (baseball)
Ross with the Cubs in 2016
|Chicago Cubs – No. 3|
March 19, 1977 |
|June 28, 2002, for the Los Angeles Dodgers|
(through August 17, 2016)
|Runs batted in||309|
|Career highlights and awards|
David Wade Ross (born March 19, 1977) is an American professional baseball catcher for the Chicago Cubs in Major League Baseball (MLB). Ross played college baseball for Auburn University and the University of Florida, and participated in two College World Series. He started his major league career playing for the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2002, and has also played for the Pittsburgh Pirates, San Diego Padres, Cincinnati Reds, Boston Red Sox, and Atlanta Braves.
Ross was born in Bainbridge, Georgia in 1977. He attended Florida State University's laboratory school, Florida High School, in Tallahassee, Florida, where he played high school baseball for the Florida High School Demons.
Ross received an athletic scholarship to attend Auburn University in Auburn, Alabama, where he played college baseball for the Auburn Tigers baseball team from 1996 to 1997. He transferred to the University of Florida after the 1997 season, and played one additional season of college baseball for the Florida Gators baseball team in 1998. Ross is one of the few players to have ever played in the College World Series with two different colleges, first with the Tigers in 1997, and then the Gators in 1998. Ross decided to forgo his final season of National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) eligibility after his junior season with the Gators, and entered the Major League Baseball Draft.
Los Angeles Dodgers
Ross was originally drafted in the 19th round of the 1995 amateur draft by the Los Angeles Dodgers, but did not sign and instead accepted a scholarship to attend Auburn University. In 1998, the Dodgers selected Ross again in the 7th round of the amateur draft. He signed and made his MLB debut on June 28, 2002, and was with the team until 2004.  The Dodgers were winning 18–0, and the Diamondbacks put Grace in to pitch, after he volunteered, to rest the bullpen. Ross' Dodger career was stagnated, however, by the large number of catchers in the Dodger system. Paul Lo Duca was the starting catcher through most of Ross' time in Los Angeles, and teammates like Brent Mayne, Koyie Hill, and Todd Hundley competed with him for playing time.
Ross hit 6 home runs in his first 27 career at-bats, spanning from 2002–2003, the 3rd most HR in the first 27 career at-bats in Dodgers history.
Pittsburgh Pirates/San Diego Padres
Ross' contract was sold by the Dodgers to the Pittsburgh Pirates on March 30, 2005. After 40 games with the Pirates, he was traded to the San Diego Padres on July 28, 2005 for infielder J. J. Furmaniak. He played in only 11 games with the Padres.
The Padres traded Ross to the Cincinnati Reds during spring training for the 2006 season. On January 15, 2006, Ross signed a two-year, $4.54m deal with the Reds. On April 26, 2006, against the Washington Nationals at the Nationals' former home field, the expansive, pitcher-friendly RFK Stadium. Facing right-hander (and former Red) Ramón Ortiz in the third inning, Ross blasted a pitch deep into the upper deck stands in right-center field. The home run traveled an estimated 474 feet (144.7 m).
While Ross was most often used as the "personal catcher" for right-hander Bronson Arroyo, whom the Reds received in a spring training trade with the Boston Red Sox for outfielder Wily Mo Peña, the consensus among Reds fans was that Ross had proven himself deserving of being the number one catcher due to his better offensive numbers and that one of the other Reds catchers, Jason LaRue or Javier Valentín, should have been traded (possibly as part of a package deal) for a relief pitcher. LaRue was the one most frequently cited, but no deal was made by the July 31 trade deadline. Ostensibly, Ross was the number one catcher.
On November 20, 2006, LaRue was traded to the Kansas City Royals for a player to be named later. Ross' 2007 season started with 4 hits in 38 at-bats with no home runs and 17 strikeouts. On April 21, 2007, his slump hit rock bottom when with runners on first base and second base, he grounded into a rare 5–4–3 triple play against the Philadelphia Phillies. Ross finished the 2007 season with a .203 batting average and 17 home runs. On August 10, 2008, Ross was designated for assignment and was released on August 18.
Boston Red Sox
Ross was the Atlanta Braves secondary catcher behind Brian McCann for his four seasons with the Braves. His hot start in the 2011 season (hitting .333 after starting 7 games, with 3 home runs) highlighted his strengths, as Ross has always been known as a strong defensive catcher (in 2009, he committed 1 error in 52 games).
Boston Red Sox (Second stint)
Ross suffered two concussions during the 2013 season and spent over two months on the disabled list; however, his health returned and he played a key role in Boston's run to the World Series championship that year, starting in four games during the series and driving in the game-winning run with an RBI double in Game 5. In 2014, he played as Jon Lester's personal catcher.
On May 9, 2015, in his first appearance as a pitcher in his professional baseball career, Ross recorded a 1-2-3 inning against the Milwaukee Brewers. On July 26, he repeated the feat against the Philadelphia Phillies, then led off the next inning by hitting a home run off of Héctor Neris.
In April 2016 a grassroots campaign to vote the journeyman catcher into the 2016 All Star Game was formed. The movement drew comparisons to John Scott's fan selection to the 2016 NHL All Star Game.
On April 21, 2016 Ross caught his first no-hitter, against the Cincinnati Reds, his former team, with starting pitcher Jake Arrieta. On May 27, 2016, Ross hit his 100th home run off of Adam Morgan of the Philadelphia Phillies.
- September 2, 2002 Los Angeles Dodgers at Arizona Diamondbacks Play by Play and Box Score – Baseball-Reference.com
- Steve Silva (August 21, 2008). "Report: Sox sign catcher Ross to minor-league deal". Boston Globe. Retrieved October 23, 2013.
- Mark Remme (August 29, 2008). "Sox call up Ross, send Casey to DL". MLB.com. Retrieved August 30, 2008.
- Bowman, Mark (December 5, 2008). "Braves sign Ross to two-year deal". MLB.com. Retrieved November 18, 2009.
- Rosenthal, Ken (July 27, 2010). "Report: Ross, Braves reach two-year extension". NBC Sports. Archived from the original on October 9, 2012. Retrieved February 9, 2016.
- Rosenthal, Ken (November 10, 2012). "Red Sox, Ross agree to two-year deal". Fox Sports.
- Sullivan, Paul (December 23, 2014). "Catcher David Ross officially signs two-year deal with Cubs". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved December 23, 2014.
- Hoehn, Jim (May 9, 2015). "Catcher Ross pitches a perfect eighth inning". MLB.com. Retrieved Apr 25, 2016.
- Garno, Greg (July 26, 2015). "Ross pitches perfect ninth, homers for Cubs". MLB.com. Retrieved Apr 25, 2016.
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