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Javy López

Javy López poses with fans
Catcher
Born: November 5, 1970 (1970-11-05) (age 39)
Ponce, Puerto Rico
Batted: Right Threw: Right 
MLB debut
September 18, 1992 for the Atlanta Braves
Last MLB appearance
September 2, 2006 for the Boston Red Sox
Career statistics
Batting average     .287
Home runs     260
Runs batted in     864
Teams
Career highlights and awards

Javier López Torres (born November 5, 1970 in Ponce, Puerto Rico) is a former catcher in Major League Baseball who played from 1992 through 2006 for the Atlanta Braves (1992–2003), Baltimore Orioles (2004–2006) and Boston Red Sox (2006). He batted and threw right-handed. He was named Ponce, Puerto Rico's Athlete of the Year from 1984-1987.

Contents

Professional career

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Atlanta Braves

Signed by the Atlanta Braves in 1987 as an amateur free agent, López made his debut on September 18, 1992 against the Houston Astros. After sharing duties with Charlie O'Brien and Eddie Pérez for four seasons, he established himself as the Braves regular catcher in 1996. The same season, he led the Braves to win the National League Championship Series, earning the series Most Valuable Player honors. He also made the National League All-Star team from 1997–98. Lopez had his best season in 2003 with a .328 batting average, 43 home runs and 109 RBI in 129 games, including a .378 on-base percentage and a .687 slugging average. In that season he broke Todd Hundley's record for most home runs hit in a season by a catcher (41) and was selected to the All-Star Game, winning the Silver Slugger Award and finishing fifth in the National League MVP ballot.

While with the Braves, López caught Kent Mercker's no-hitter on April 8, 1994.

Baltimore Orioles

Before the 2004 season López signed as a free agent with the Baltimore Orioles. He hit .316 with 86 RBI, and the following season hit .278 with 49 RBI, while seeing a decline in his game time from 150 to 103 games.

Boston Red Sox

In the 2006 midseason he was acquired by the Boston Red Sox from Baltimore in exchange for minor league outfielder Adam Stern and cash consideration.[1] López debuted with Boston on the same day after Doug Mirabelli left the game early after an ankle injury. On September 8, the Red Sox released López due to Jason Varitek returning from the disabled list, which minimized his playing time.

Retirement

In January 2007, it was reported that López reached a preliminary agreement on a $750,000, one-year contract with the Colorado Rockies, [2] but he did not play for them during the regular season. [3] Before the 2008 season he signed a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training with the Atlanta Braves, in an attempt to return to the majors. But after being told he would not make the opening day lineup, López retired for good. [4] "I feel perfect physically," he said. "It's just that the hitting wasn't there and unfortunately I didn't throw the guy out on the stealing attempts. That's a concern. I don't blame them. My role as a backup catcher is to be able to throw every single runner out." [5] He plans to continue in the Atlanta Braves organization performing other duties.

In a 15-season career, López posted a .287 average with 260 home runs and 864 RBI in 1,503 games. His 243 home runs as a catcher rank eight on the career list at that position. His Final game was on September 2,2006. [2]

Personal

López married Analy Hernández, a model. They had two children: Javier Alexander (born 11/6/95) and Kelvin Gabrielle (10/17/99). They divorced and López married Gina Brodbeck on June 23, 2004.[6].

See also

References

External links

Preceded by
Mike Devereaux
National League Championship Series MVP
1996
Succeeded by
Liván Hernández
Preceded by
Mike Lieberthal
NL Comeback Player of the Year
2003
Succeeded by
Chris Carpenter

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