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Aybar taking batting practice with the Atlanta Braves
|Atlanta Braves – No. 1|
January 14, 1984 |
Baní, Dominican Republic
|May 16, 2006, for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim|
(through July 4, 2016)
|Runs batted in||431|
|Career highlights and awards|
Erick Johan Aybar (born January 14, 1984) is a Dominican professional baseball shortstop for the Atlanta Braves of Major League Baseball (MLB). He previously played in MLB for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
Aybar was signed by the then Anaheim Angels as an amateur free agent in 2002 and made his Major League debut on May 16, 2006 a pinch runner against the Toronto Blue Jays. He recorded his first Major League hit, in his first start, on May 20, 2006 against the Los Angeles Dodgers, a single to right field in the fourth inning off of Brett Tomko.
On September 5, 2009, Aybar tied a franchise record for most triples in a game, 2, against the Kansas City Royals.
September 8, 2009, Aybar had his first career walk-off hit, against the Seattle Mariners.
In 2009, Aybar hit .312 (eighth in the AL) and posted the fourth-best OPS (.776) of all AL shortstops.
On November 1, 2011, Aybar was awarded his first Rawlings Gold Glove Award.
On July 10, 2014, Aybar was named an All Star for the first time in his career, replacing injured Kansas City Royals outfielder Alex Gordon. Aybar was hitting .283 with 6 home runs and 45 RBI through 89 games at the time of his selection.
During the MLB offseason, Aybar plays in the Caribbean Series alongside many other fellow MLB players from the countries involved. It is a way for them to prepare for the upcoming MLB season by playing in live games and it is a way for them to represent their country. The most talked about series was probably in 2006 when Venezuela and the Dominican Republic squared off. Both of these countries are no strangers to each other and have developed a very heated rivalry over the years.
With his team down, 4–3, in the ninth, Baltimore catcher Ramon Hernandez, named the Caribbean Series MVP, led off the bottom of the frame with a single and was immediately replaced by pinch runner William Bergolla. The move proved to be a wise one because Bergolla advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt and tied the game at 4 when he rambled home on Gonzalez's single to right field. Gonzalez would not stay at first long.
Cubs catcher Henry Blanco followed with a high popup to shallow left field between Dominican shortstop Erick Aybar and left fielder Napoleón Calzado. With Aybar backpedaling and seemingly confused, the ball hit Aybar's head and rolled away. Gonzalez sped around the bases to send Venezuela's Caracas Baseball Club into the record books with a 5–4 victory to secure the title.
Aybar is the youngest brother (by 10 months) of former Tampa Bay Rays infielder/outfielder Willy Aybar. He is also the cousin of Wil Aybar, who coaches Central Mass Diving and the diving team at The College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts.
- "Braves deal Andrelton Simmons to Angels for Erick Aybar in SS swap". ESPN.com. November 12, 2015.
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