Sean Rodriguez

Sean Rodriguez

Rodriguez with the Tampa Bay Rays
Atlanta Braves
Utility player
Born: (1985-04-26) April 26, 1985
Miami, Florida
Bats: Right Throws: Right
MLB debut
April 19, 2008, for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
MLB statistics
(through 2016 season)
Batting average .234
Hits 506
Home runs 67
Runs batted in 259

Sean John Rodriguez (born April 26, 1985) is an American professional baseball utility player for the Atlanta Braves of Major League Baseball (MLB). He previously played for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Tampa Bay Rays, and Pittsburgh Pirates. While primarily a second baseman, Rodriguez has started at every position in his MLB career except for catcher and pitcher.

High school career

Rodriguez was born in Miami to Cuban parents and began his high school career at Miami Coral Park High School.[1] Rodriguez played center field and displayed good arm strength. Although he was successful in center field, he wanted to play shortstop. However, during his freshman year shortstop was occupied by the eventual third overall pick of the 2000 Major League Baseball Draft (Luis Montanez). After Montanez graduated there was an intense competition for the shortstop position between three top candidates: Guillermo Martinez (Florida Marlins), Robert Valido (Chicago White Sox), and Rodriguez. Eventually, Valido won the battle with Martinez moving to third and Rodriguez to center. Rodriguez was never happy in center leading to his eventual transfer to G. Holmes Braddock High School.[2]

Professional career

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

Rodriguez was drafted out of high school by the Anaheim Angels in the third round (90th overall) of the 2003 Major League Baseball Draft. Rodriguez, then primarily a shortstop, began his professional career for the Rookie League Tempe Angels in 2003. In 54 games, he batted .269 with 2 home runs.

Rodriguez split the 2004 season between the Rookie League Provo Angels and the Single-A Cedar Rapids Kernels. In a combined 121 games, he batted .297 with 14 home runs. Rodriguez was named to the Pioneer League postseason All-Star game and was the MVP of the game.[3] Rodriguez spent the entire 2005 season playing for the Kernels. He played in 124 games and batted just .250 with 14 home runs.[3]

Rodriguez with the Salt Lake Bees in 2009

In 2006, he split the year between the Single-A Rancho Cucamonga Quakes, the Double-A Arkansas Travelers, and the Triple-A Salt Lake Bees (just one game for them). In a combined 135 games, he batted .307 with 29 home runs. His 135 games were a career high for him and so were his .307 batting average, 29 home runs, 77 Run batted in (RBIs), 522 at-bats, and his 34 doubles. He also led the Quakes with 24 home runs, a .299 batting average, and was tied for first in doubles with 29.[3] Rodriguez was also named to the California League midseason and postseason All-Star game and after the minor league season, was named by Baseball America and Topps as a Class A All-Star.

In 2007, Rodriguez played for the Travelers again, this time for an entire season. In a career high 136 games, he batted .254 with 17 home runs and 73 RBIs. He led the Travelers with his 136 games played, 17 home runs, 73 RBIs, 84 runs (tied), and came in second with 129 hits and 31 doubles.[3] Rodriguez was also a Texas League midseason and postseason All-Star.

On November 2, 2007, Rodriguez's contract was purchased by the Angels, protecting him from the Rule 5 draft. Rodriguez began the 2008 season for the Triple-A Salt Lake Bees. On April 18, 2008, he was recalled from the Bees and made his major league debut the next day against the Seattle Mariners. He went 1–4 in his debut.

Tampa Bay Rays

On September 1, 2009, he was traded to the Tampa Bay Rays as the player to be named in a deal that sent Scott Kazmir to the Angels. Fellow minor leaguers Matt Sweeney and Alexander Torres also came to the Rays in the trade. Rodriguez was assigned to the AAA Durham Bulls, where he finished out the season.[3]

Rodriguez's final 2009 stats between Salt Lake City and Durham included a .294 batting average, 30 home runs, and 98 RBIs in 385 at-bats.[3] On September 23 Rodriguez helped Durham win the Triple-A championship, hitting a two-run homer in a 5–4 win over the Memphis Redbirds.

In 2010 he played for the Rays, as their part-time second baseman and utility player. In 343 at bats, he hit .251 with 9 home runs and 40 RBIs. He stole 13 bases on the year, while being caught stealing 3 times.[4]

During the 2011 season, Rodriguez played 101 games with a .209 batting average, 6 home runs, and 30 RBIs. During a game vs the Seattle Mariners on August 15, 2012, Rodriguez struck out looking for the final out in Félix Hernández's perfect game. On August 21, 2012, Rodriguez was optioned to Triple-A after the team activated Luke Scott from the disabled list.

In 2013, he set career lows in every offensive category while playing just 96 games for the Rays. Despite hitting a career low .211 in 96 games for the Rays in 2014, Rodriguez set career highs in home runs (12) and RBIs (41). He was designated for assignment on November 26, when the Rays signed Ernesto Frieri.[5]

Pittsburgh Pirates

On December 1, 2014, he was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for a player to be named later.[6] Pirates minor league right handed pitcher Buddy Borden was the player to be named later as he was sent to the Tampa Bay Rays to complete the trade for Rodriguez.[7]

On October 7, 2015, Rodriguez was ejected from the NL Wild Card game for his role in a benches clearing brawl after Chicago Cubs pitcher Jake Arrieta was intentionally hit by a pitch from Pirates relief pitcher Tony Watson. Earlier in the game, Francisco Cervelli along with Josh Harrison, were hit by Arrieta.[8]

On December 17, 2015, Rodriguez re-signed with the Pirates on a one-year, $2.5 million contract.[9] Rodriguez and Brandon Drury were named the National League's Co-Players of the Week, after Rodriguez batted .414 (12-for-29), with six runs scored, five home runs, 12 RBIs, and a 1.386 OPS during the week of Sept 12-Sept 18.[10]

Atlanta Braves

On November 30, 2016, Rodriguez officially signed a two-year, $11.5 million contract with the Atlanta Braves.[11]

Personal life

Rodriguez and his wife, Giselle, have four children.[12] Rodriguez is heavily involved in autism awareness, as his son, Sean Jr., is highly-functioning with autism.[13]


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