December 7 – Happy Birthday Eric Chavez

chavezEric Chavez turns 35-years-old today. Yesterday, his two year career in pinstripes came to an end, when he signed a one-year, three million dollar deal with the Diamondbacks. The Yankees paid Chavez a total of $2.4 million during the past two seasons to serve as A-Rod’s back-up. It proved to be a wise investment, as Rodriguez made several trips to the DL during that span. Chavez, a Los Angeles native, filled in brilliantly during most of those absences, providing a steady glove and a potent bat.

The Yankees first signed Chavez in February of 2010 and gave him a chance to make the club in spring training. He did so easily and was playing well early in the season, when he broke his foot running the bases. Injuries have hounded the six-time Gold Glove winner since 2007, during his final three seasons with the A’s. He mostly avoided getting hurt this past year with the Yankees, appearing in 113 games in 2012, hitting 16 home runs and  averaging .281. Like most of the Yankee lineup, Chavez’s bat went stone cold in the 2012 postseason. He was 0-16 in fall ball against the Orioles and Tigers. Perhaps that’s one of the reasons why Yankee GM Brian Cashman didn’t make re-signing this guy a top priority during the offseason. I have to admit I was shocked when I read he had signed with Arizona, especially since just a few days before, the Yankees learned A-Rod would miss at least half of the 2013 regular season due to hip surgery.

2016 will be Chavez’s sixteenth season in the Majors. He will enter it with 248 big league home runs and a career OPS of .818. He shares his birthday with this great Yankee first baseman and these two former Yankee outfielders.

Year Tm G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
2011 NYY 58 175 160 16 42 7 1 2 26 0 14 34 .263 .320 .356 .676
2012 NYY 113 313 278 36 78 12 0 16 37 0 30 59 .281 .348 .496 .845
16 Yrs 1571 6147 5449 810 1460 315 23 257 894 48 628 1060 .268 .342 .476 .818
OAK (13 yrs) 1320 5405 4783 730 1276 282 20 230 787 47 565 922 .267 .343 .478 .821
NYY (2 yrs) 171 488 438 52 120 19 1 18 63 0 44 93 .274 .338 .445 .783
ARI (1 yr) 80 254 228 28 64 14 2 9 44 1 19 45 .281 .332 .478 .810
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 12/7/2013.

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