Ismael Valdéz Alvarez previously known as Ismael Valdes
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 3", Weight 185 lb.
- Debut June 15, 1994
- Final Game October 1, 2005
- Born August 21, 1973 in Ciudad Victoria, Tamaulipas Mexico
Ismael Valdéz began his professional career at age 17 with the GCL Dodgers in 1991 and went 2-2 with a 2.32 ERA. Moving to the Los Angeles Dodgers' Dominican Summer League club the next year, Valdéz had a 3-0 record and a 1.42 ERA. He also pitched for the Mexico City Tigers that year but had a 19.64 ERA and allowed 15 hits in 3 2/3 innings. He improved drastically in his return to Mexico City in 1993, going 16-9 with a 3.94 ERA. Only Urbano Lugo won more games in the Mexican League that season. Valdéz also appeared briefly for the San Antonio Missions and was 1-0 with a 1.38 ERA in two starts.
The Dodgers moved Valdéz stateside full-time in 1994; he was 2-3 with a 3.38 ERA for San Antonio, 4-1 with a 3.40 ERA for the Albuquerque Dukes and made his major league debut at age 20 and was 3-1 with a 3.18 ERA. Ismael entered the rotation in 1995 and posted four straight seasons of double-digit wins, with ERA+s of 125, 116, 146, 98 and then 111 when he won 9 games in 1999. He twice was fourth in the National League in ERA during this period, was in the top 10 in shutouts three times, strikeouts once, wins twice and complete games once. Known for fine control, Valdéz was one of the NL's top pitchers during the 5-year span.
He declined in 2000 with a 2-7 record and 76 ERA+ but was again above-average (albeit with poor run support) the following two seasons. Valdéz's record improved in 2003 and 2004 (a combined 22-17) but his pitching was sagging and he pitched for six clubs from 2000 to 2004, as he was no longer a hot commodity. Seeing only limited action with the Florida Marlins in 2005 and suffering an injury, Valdéz was unable to catch on with any team in 2006 after he failed a trial with the Cincinnati Reds in spring training. In his major league career, Valdéz was 104-105 with a 103 ERA+.
Sources include Viva Beisbol! newsletter by Bruce Baskin
- 15 Wins Seasons: 1 (1996)
- 200 Innings Pitched Seasons: 2 (1996 & 1999)