From BR Bullpen
José Manuel Aponte Lartiguez
- Bats Left, Throws Right
- Height 5' 10", Weight 160 lb.
José Aponte reached high-A ball.
Aponte debuted in 2001, hitting .288 with 5 HR and 37 RBI for Ciudad Alianza in the Venezuelan Summer League. The Maracay native split 2002 between the VSL (.105, 3 RBI) and the GCL Marlins (.285/.371/.461, 7 3B). He led the Gulf Coast League in triples.
Aponte split 2003 between the Greensboro Bats (.298/.345/.385 in 53 G) and the Jupiter Hammerheads (.207/.233/.310 in 13 G). In 2004, he hit .213/.276/.329 with 6 triples (tied for the team lead) for Jupiter to end his minor league career.
José later appeared for the Venezuelan national team five times from 2006-2008. He hit .318/.375/.364 in the 2006 Central American and Caribbean Games. In COPABE's 2006 qualifiers for the 2008 Olympics, he hit .296/.424/.741 with 4 homers and 9 runs in 8 games; he only drove in five. He also had 3 outfield assists and one error. He tied Yulieski Gourriel, Mark Reynolds, Alexander Mayeta, Carlos Valencia and Jorge Vázquez for the tourney lead in circuit clouts, impressive company for Aponte.
Aponte was 1 for 12 with a double, walk and RBI in the 2007 Pan American Games. He produced at a .286/.423/.429 rate as Venezuela's starting center fielder in the 2007 Baseball World Cup. In the 2008 Americas Baseball Cup, he went 3 for 17 with a walk and four runs.