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Rocco Baldelli #15

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Full Name:
Rocco Baldelli
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• On Dec. 19, 2014 was named the sixth first base coach in club history…at 33 years old is the youngest Rays coach ever, supplanting Billy Hatcher, who was 37 as the first base coach for the inaugural Devil Rays in 1998…is four years younger than any other active Major League coach or manager…Kevin Cash, Eric Hinske (Cubs first base coach) and Andy Green (D-backs third base coach) are all 37.

• Replaces George Hendrick, who had held the post since 2006…also follows Billy Hatcher (1998-99, 2003-05), Jose Cardenal (2000-01), Lee May (2001-02) and Dave Martinez, who filled in for Hendrick the first three weeks of 2007 while he recovered from knee surgery.

• Spent the last four seasons in the Rays organization as a special assistant, baseball operations -- a position he accepted in January 2011 upon retiring from an 11-year professional career as an outfielder. 


• Drafted by Tampa Bay as the sixth overall selection in the 2000 June Draft…played parts of seven Major League seasons with the Rays (2003-04, 2006-08, 2010) and Red Sox (2009).

• Finished third in the 2003 American League Rookie of the Year balloting behind KC Angel Berroa and NYY Hideki Matsui…received five first-place votes…led AL rookies in batting (.289, still the club record for a rookie), runs (89), steals (27) triples (8) and hits (184, one shy of Ted Williams' rookie season).

• In his first month in the Major Leagues (April 2003) amassed 39 hits, still a club record for any player in April…is the last rookie to lead the AL in outfield assists (15) and one of only nine to do it in the last 84 years.

• In his first two seasons, he batted .285 (329-for-1,155) with 27 HR and 44 SB.

• Missed the entire 2005 season due to knee and elbow surgeries, and was hampered by injuries for the rest of his career…was ultimately forced to retire at the age of 29…played his final game in Game 1 of the 2010 ALDS vs. TEX.

• Drove in the go-ahead run in the Rays' 3-1 win in Game 7 of the 2008 ALCS vs. BOS…his fifth-inning single off Jon Lester put the Rays up, 2-1.

• Is one of three players in Rays history to hit a home run in the World Series…homered in Game 5 at PHI in 2008 off Ryan Madson…Carl Crawford and Eric Hinske are the others.


• Was the 2008 winner of the Tony Conigliaro Award, given by the Boston BBWAA to the Major League player who has overcome adversity through the attributes of spirit, determination and courage -- trademarks of the former Red Sox star outfielder.

• Was a 2004 inductee into the Rhode Island Italian-American Hall of Fame.

• Named either first- or second-team All-State in baseball, track, basketball and volleyball at Bishop Hendricken High School (Warwick, R.I.)…remains one of only two Rhode Island natives to be selected in the first round of the regular phase of the June Draft, along with SS Bill Almon (Padres, 1974)…between 1965-86 the June Draft consisted of two phases.

• Has a tattoo of the MLB logo on his left calf.

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