Alvaro Alberto Espinoza Ramirez
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 0", Weight 181 lb.
- Debut September 14, 1984
- Final Game July 12, 1997
- Born February 19, 1962 in Valencia, Carabobo, Venezuela
Infielder Álvaro Espinoza was a good-field, no-hit utility infielder for several clubs during parts of a dozen seasons in the majors. He later was a minor league manager and big league coach.
Espinoza was signed as a free agent for the Houston Astros by scout Hank Izquierdo in 1978 but was released after just two years in their chain. Signing with the Minnesota Twins prior to the 1982 season, he reached the majors with them late in the 1984 campaign, appearing in just one game at shortstop and making no plate appearances. Following the 1987 season, he moved on to the New York Yankees organization. He saw most of his big league action as the Yankees' regular shortstop from 1989 to 1991 and had his best season in 1991, when he hit .254 with 5 home runs.
Signed by the Cleveland Indians before the 1992 season, Espinoza played exclusively in the minors that summer, hitting .300 with 9 homers and 79 RBIs for the Colorado Springs Sky Sox to earn a spot on the Pacific Coast League All-Star team. He was a bench player for the Indians the next several years before being traded to the New York Mets in 1996. He ended his playing days with the Seattle Mariners in 1997.
Sportscenter fans probably best remember Espinoza as "The Bubble Man" when, as a bench warmer for the Indians in 1995, he'd prank teammates by putting blown up bubblegum on their caps, his teammates none the wiser.
In 1998, Espinoza was the Montreal Expos' minor league infield coordinator. He managed the Vero Beach Dodgers in 1999 and was the Los Angeles Dodgers' roving minor league infield coordinator in 2000 and 2001. He then held the same job with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2002. He was an instructor for the big league Pirates from 2003 to 2005, although he was not officially listed as a coach, and in 2006, he was the roving instructor again. He was a member of the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees coaching staff in 2007 and 2008. He coached for the EDA Rhinos in 2015, going 5-6 as interim manager.
Espinoza is the brother of Roberto Espinoza, a long-time minor league coach.
Year-By-Year Minor League Managerial Record
|1999||Vero Beach Dodgers||Florida State League||48-85||14th||Los Angeles Dodgers|