||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (March 2009)|
Baker playing for the Texas Rangers in 2013 spring training
June 21, 1981 |
Bad Kissingen, West Germany
|April 4, 2005, for the Colorado Rockies|
(through 2015 season)
|Runs batted in||235|
Jeffrey "Jeff" Glen Baker (born June 21, 1981) is an American professional baseball player who is currently a free agent. He bats and throws right-handed. He has played in Major League Baseball for the Colorado Rockies, Chicago Cubs, Detroit Tigers, Atlanta Braves, Texas Rangers and Miami Marlins. Primarily a second baseman and first baseman, Baker also has experience in the outfield and at third base.
Baker enrolled at Clemson University, where he played college baseball for the Clemson Tigers from 2000-2002. He played as third baseman as well as shortstop. Baker set the school record for career home runs with 59 home runs, a feat he accomplished in three years.
Baker made his Major League debut in 2005, as the Opening Day third baseman for the Colorado Rockies, playing a total of 12 games. He had been added to the Rockies lineup as a replacement for injured third baseman Garrett Atkins and on the return of Atkins, Baker was assigned to the Colorado Springs Sky Sox, the Rockies Triple-A affiliate.
Baker was drafted by the Rockies in 2004 after playing college baseball at Clemson University. While at Clemson, Baker set the school record for career home runs with 59 home runs, a feat he accomplished in three years. He was a three-time Baseball America All-American and a finalist for the Golden Spikes Award in 2002 (the award was won by Clemson teammate Khalil Greene).
In 2006, Baker played a full season for the Sky Sox hitting .305 with 20 home runs and 108 runs batted in (RBIs), playing primarily in right field. He was named to the Baseball America All-Minor League team. He was then called up to the Rockies in early September and was rewarded with significant playing time in right field.
Baker has served as a super-utility type player for the Rockies during the 2007–08 seasons. He is able to play all corner positions, and has developed skill at second base. During Spring Training 2008, Baker contended for the starting second baseman spot, but was eventually beaten out by Jayson Nix. After Nix failed to adapt to the major league level, Baker spent the remainder of the season platooning at second base with Clint Barmes and Omar Quintanilla.
Baker was assigned to the Modesto Nuts (Class A Affiliate of the Colorado Rockies) as part of a rehab assignment for an injured wrist on June 19, 2009, according to modestonuts.com.
Baker appeared in 15 games for the Tigers this month after he was acquired from the Cubs. The veteran has played second base and all four corner positions this year, while posting a line of .254/.293/.408 in 181 total plate appearances.
In January 2013, Baker was signed by the Texas Rangers to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training. He was named to the 2013 Opening Day roster in March. His first hit as a Ranger came on April 13 against the Mariners, and his first home run as a Ranger came on April 19, also against the Mariners. On June 14, he injured his thumb giving a high-five, and missed about a month. Used more often against left-handed pitchers, he hit .314/.407/.667 with 10 HR and 18 RBI against them. In 74 games (44 starts, mostly at first base and left field), he hit .279/.360/.545 with 11 HR and 21 RBI. On October 9, Baker was designated for assignment to make room for Matt West, and elected free agency on October 14.
- "Jeff Baker Stats, Bio, Photos, Highlights | cubs.com: Team". Retrieved March 4, 2010.
- "Cubs trade infielder Baker to Detroit". FoxNews.com. Retrieved August 5, 2012.
- "The Tigers trade Baker to Atlanta". MLB Trade Rumors. Retrieved August 31, 2012.
- Durrett, Richard (January 26, 2013). "Club has minor-league deals with Nate Robertson, Jeff Baker". ESPN.com. Retrieved January 15, 2015.
- Grant, Evan (June 14, 2013). "Rangers' Jeff Baker injured by a high-five but won't finger culprit". The Dallas Morning News.
- Keith, Ted (June 18, 2013). "Rangers’ Baker goes on DL with sprained thumb suffered in high-five". SI.com. Retrieved February 8, 2014.
- Fraley, Gerry (October 9, 2013). "Texas Rangers activate pitching prospect". The Dallas Morning News.
- Sullivan, T.R. (October 9, 2013). "West activated from 60-day DL; Baker designated". MLB.com. Retrieved January 15, 2015.
- Frisaro, Joe (February 4, 2014). "Marlins land platoon option, bat off bench in Baker". MLB.com. Retrieved February 8, 2014.
- "Jeff Baker inks Marlins deal". ESPN.com. Associated Press. February 8, 2014. Retrieved February 8, 2014.
- Frisaro, Joe (February 7, 2014). "Marlins finalize contract with veteran Baker". MLB.com. Retrieved February 8, 2014.
- Sullivan, T. R. (May 9, 2013). "Rangers' Baker salutes Wounded Warriors". MLB.com. Retrieved February 8, 2014.
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