Eddy Jorge Garabito
- Bats Both, Throws Right
- Height 5' 8", Weight 188 lb.
- Debut May 27, 2005
- Final Game August 8, 2005
- Born December 2, 1976 in Bajos de Haina, San Cristobal, D.R.
Eddy Garabito has played 14 seasons in professional baseball (through 2009) including stops in the major leagues, Mexico, Canada, the Dominican Republic and Italy. He hit over .300 in one MLB stint.
Garabito signed with the Baltimore Orioles at age 19, relatively old for a Dominican Republic native. He debuted as a pro with the 1996 DSL Orioles and hit .275 with 25 steals in 35 tries. He tied for 4th in the Dominican Summer League with six triples.
In 1997, Eddy hit .303/.359/.446 for the Bluefield Orioles and swiped 26 bases in 35 tries. He also was 0 for 4 with the Delmarva Shorebirds. He was second on the Bluefield club in average behind Jerry Hairston Jr. and he tied for second in the Appalachian League in steals, only 3 behind leader Joe Kilburg. Garabito led the loop's second basemen in both putouts (97) and fielding percentage (.956) while helping Hairston lead their club to the pennant.
The youngster spent most of 1998 with Delmarva, batting .247/.310/.378 and being thrown out in 15 of 40 steal attempts. Two positives were 12 sacrifice flies (leading the South Atlantic League) and 84 double plays (leading SAL second basemen). MILB.com mistakenly lists him as leading the league with 8 triples, but the co-leaders that year in the SAL each had 10. He was a late-season call-up to the Frederick Keys, going 4 for 19 with a double, triple and a walk.
In 1999, Garabito produced at a .256/.321/.349 rate for Frederick with 38 steals in 56 tries. He led the Carolina League in at-bats (539), sacrifice flies (10) and times gunned down running. He also was third in the circuit in steals, 9 behind leader Scott Pratt, and was 5th with 138 hits, 24 behind leader Marcus Giles. His 23 errors tied Pratt for the most by a league second baseman. He drove in 77 runs, second on the club, just one behind Franky Figueroa, despite his low slugging percentage and despite usually hitting first or second in the order.
During the 2001 season, Garabito had a typical season, now with Rochester, hitting .267/.311/.364 and stealing 24 bases in 35 attempts. He led the Red Wings with 138 hits, 517 AB, 29 doubles, 6 triples and 28 errors and also paced the team in steals.
Back with Rochester for 2002, Eddy hit .258/.300/.350 and only was 11-for-19 in steals as he was starting to slow down. He hit .286 for the Azucareros del Este in the Dominican Winter League, pacing the loop with 57 hits. His 27 runs were only two behind league leader Felix Jose, tying Eddy with Jose Reyes and Wilton Guerrero.
Garabito remained with Baltimore at the AAA level in 2003, now with their new Ottawa Lynx affiliate. He batted .281/.327/.383 while making the unusual move from second base to shortstop halfway through his career. He had four games of four or five hits. He then was 5 for 12 with a double and a homer in the playoffs. In the Dominican League, he batted .243 for the Azucareros.
For 2004, Eddy spent his 9th season in the Baltimore system and his fourth in a row at AAA. Serving as Ottawa's main shortstop again, he hit .298/.359/.420 and stole 19 bases (in 31 tries) as one of the club's top contact threats. It was the first time he had topped a .400 slugging percentage in 7 years.
He became a free agent and signed with the Colorado Rockies chain. He hit .306/.379/.484 for the Colorado Springs Sky Sox in the Pacific Coast League in 2005 and .307/.384/.398 in 42 games for the major leagues for the Rockies, spending part of May, June, part of July and part of August in the majors. He debuted in the majors as a pinch-hitter for David Cortes and grounding out against Todd Wellemeyer. Four days later, he pinch-hit for Jason Jennings and singled off Mark Mulder for his first MLB hit, but was promptly picked off. On June 18th, he hit a 2-run homer off Sidney Ponson in the 7th inning to break up a shutout; through 2009, it has been Garabito's lone big league home run.
In spite of that, he was granted free agency after the season. In 2006, he was back in the Baltimore Orioles organization at the Triple A level, hitting .257. He hit .257/.326/.344 for Ottawa and was 19-for-27 in steal attempts.
Garabito was 3 for 10 with 4 walks and a homer as an OF/2B for the Dominican team in the 2007 Pan-American Games.
In the minor leagues, he had 249 career stolen bases.
Garabito signed with Fortitudo Bologna for 2009. In the 2009 European Cup Matino phase, he was 5 for 10 with 2 walks, a run and a RBI. He put on an amazing show in the 2-1 win over FC Barcelona, with two outfield assists. Garabito debuted in the Italian Baseball League on April 9, 2009, hitting cleanup for Bologna and going 1 for 4 in a win over Parma. Garabito continued his fine play from the European Cup into the IBL regular season. For the campaign, he hit .383 (leading the IBL by 22 points over Jhonny Carvajal), with a .462 OBP (second to Claudio Liverziani), .587 slugging percentage (1st by 12 points ahead of Juan Camilo), 43 runs (leading the loop, 2 ahead of Camilo), hits (64, 1st), RBI (32, 7th) and steals (14, tied with Camilo for second behind Manny Alexander). He was named the All-Star center fielder as well as the MVP. He became the first foreign player to be named MVP since Jesus Matos in 2005, succeeding two-time winner Giuseppe Mazzanti.