Greg Garcia (baseball)
Garcia with the St.Louis Cardinals in 2016
|St. Louis Cardinals – No. 35|
August 8, 1989 |
El Cajon, California
|April 28, 2014, for the St. Louis Cardinals|
(through May 21, 2017)
|Runs batted in||24|
Greg Joseph Garcia (born August 8, 1989) is an American professional baseball infielder for the St. Louis Cardinals of Major League Baseball (MLB). The Cardinals selected him in the seventh round of the 2010 MLB Draft from the University of Hawaii. He made his major league debut April 28, 2014.
Attending the University of Hawaii at Manoa, Garcia led the team in 2010 with a .358 batting average. He also collected 40 runs batted in (RBI), scored 45 runs, and hit three home runs (HR), five triples, 13 doubles and five stolen bases (SB). He drew 31 bases on balls (BB) and struck out 30 times. After being named to the second team Western Athletic Conference (WAC) in both of his first two seasons at UH, he drew a first team all-WAC selection in 2010. In 2009, Garcia played for the Newport Gulls of the NECBL.
The Cardinals selected Garcia in the seventh round of the 2010 MLB Draft from Hawaii. With the Rookie-level Johnson City Cardinals in 2010, Garcia batted .286 with a .363 on-base percentage (OBP), four HR, 15 doubles and 24 RBI in 58 games. He batted .283 combined with the Quad Cities River Bandits and Palm Beach Cardinals in 105 games in 2011. He was a Midwest League All-Star selection that season.
In a full season with the AA Springfield Cardinals in 2012, he batted .284 with a .408 OBP, .420 SLG, 20 doubles, three 3B, 10 HR, 10 SB, 80 BB in 124 games and 504 plate appearances (PA). He spent the next two seasons with the Triple-A Memphis Redbirds of the Pacific Coast League (PCL), including batting .271 in 116 games in 2013. The franchise selected him as their player of the month for August, 2013. The club added Garcia to the 40-man roster after the 2013 season.
The Cardinals promoted Garcia to the major leagues on April 28, 2014. His first career run batted in occurred on May 13 against the Chicago Cubs, which helped provide the difference in a 4–3 win. After about two weeks with the team, the Cardinals optioned him back to Memphis. In 14 PA, he collected just two hits but had a .429 OBP. Garcia was recalled to St. Louis on August 19, after an injury to Mark Ellis, and was optioned back to AA on August 25.
Beginning the next season with Memphis, Garcia batted .361 in May, including 35 hits in 97 at bats, and 11 multihit games. That month, he also amassed four doubles, 12 RBI and five stolen bases, and reached base in 23 of 27 games for a .421 on-base percentage. His batting average ranked 10th-best in the PCL, and Garcia was thus named the St. Louis Cardinals organization Player of the Month. His totals for Memphis until the time of his major league call-up included a .313 average, 25 RBI and 31 BB. Garcia made his 2015 season debut in the major leagues on June 19 against the Philadelphia Phillies. That day, collected two hits in a 12–4 win. Garcia's first major league home was on June 26 in the eighth inning against Pedro Strop of the Chicago Cubs, tying the score in an extra inning, eventual 4–3 Cardinals win. It was his first home run in 294 major and minor league at bats.
The Cardinals opened the 2016 season with Garcia on the major league roster. His first home run of the season, on April 8, became part of a unique event in major league history. Playing the Atlanta Braves, Jeremy Hazelbaker, Aledmys Díaz, and he established a new MLB record by each hitting a pinch hit home run, becoming the first to hit three pinch hit home runs in one game for the same team. The previous record of two pinch hit home runs by the same team in the same game had previously occurred on 57 occasions, most recently in 2011. The Cardinals won this contest, 7–4. The Cardinals optioned Garcia to Memphis on April 18 after six successful hits in ten at bats, six runs scored, four doubles, four walks, .733 OPB and 1.000 SLG in 15 plate appearances. The Cardinals recalled Garcia from Memphis on May 26, where he had batted .269 in 30 games. Starting as the leadoff hitter against the Washington Nationals the following day, Garcia homered and drew two walks in a 6–2 win.
- Baseball America Toolbox Award for Pacific Coast League "Best strike zone judgment" (2015)
- Midwest League All-Star (2011)
- MiLB.com Organizational All-Star (2012)
- St. Louis Cardinals organization Player of the Month (May 2015)
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- Langosch, Jenifer (April 18, 2016). "Tejada returns from DL for utility role: Hot-hitting Diaz to remain starting shortstop; G. Garcia sent to Triple-A". stlouis.cardinals.mlb.com.
- Langosch, Jenifer; Putterman, Alex (May 26, 2016). "Carpenter on paternity leave after birth of first child". m.cardinals.mlb.com. Retrieved May 26, 2016.
- "Stephen Piscotty, Cardinals slam Max Scherzer, Nationals". USA Today. Associated Press. May 27, 2016. Retrieved May 27, 2016.
- Goold, Derrick (August 12, 2015). "Cards prospect Reyes sweeps 'Tools Triple Crown'". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved August 12, 2015.
- "Greg Garcia stats, highlights, bio". Springfield Cardinals (milb.com). Retrieved June 26, 2015.