Al Avila
Born (1958-08-02) August 2, 1958 (age 63)
NationalityCuban
Alma materSt. Thomas University
OccupationGeneral manager
Years active2015–present
OrganizationDetroit Tigers
Spouse(s)Yamile Avila
ChildrenAlex Avila
Alan Avila
Annelisa Marie Avila

Al Avila (born August 2, 1958) is the current executive vice president of baseball operations and general manager of the Detroit Tigers of Major League Baseball (MLB).

Career

St. Thomas University

Avila was the assistant baseball coach to Paul Mainieri at St. Thomas University, his alma mater, in 1988. The following season he was promoted to coach when Mainieri left for the Air Force Academy. Avila remained in that position, and also served as the school's athletics director, until he joined the expansion Florida Marlins' front office in 1992.[1]

Florida Marlins

In June 1992, Avila joined the Florida Marlins as the assistant director of Latin American operations. After two seasons with the Marlins, he was promoted to director of Latin American operations. Under Avila's guidance, the Marlins signed 1997 NLCS and World Series MVP Liván Hernández, during Florida's World Series run.

Avila was named director of scouting for the Marlins in July 1998, where he was responsible for all of the Marlins scouting efforts on both the national and international levels and he oversaw the development of those players in the baseball academies in the Dominican Republic and Venezuela. Avila helped sign 16-year-old Miguel Cabrera in 1999, who debuted in the major leagues in 2003 and hit four home runs during Florida's second World Series run.[2]

Avila served as the interim general manager for the Marlins during the 2001 off-season following Dave Dombrowski's departure to the Detroit Tigers. He was named the Marlins vice president and assistant general manager in July 2001.[3]

Pittsburgh Pirates

On January 23, 2002, Avila was hired as a special assistant to Pittsburgh Pirates general manager Dave Littlefield.[4]

Detroit Tigers

On April 15, 2002, Avila was named the assistant general manager and vice president of the Detroit Tigers.[5]

On August 4, 2015, Avila was promoted to general manager and executive vice president of baseball operations, after Dombrowski was released by the Tigers.[6] Avila became the first Cuban-born general manager in baseball history.[7] On July 5, 2019, the Tigers announced they signed Avila to a multi-year contract extension.[8]

Personal

His father, Ralph Avila, was the vice president of the Los Angeles Dodgers, and is currently the senior scouting advisor for the Dodgers.[9] His son, Alex Avila, is currently a catcher for the Washington Nationals.[10]

References

  1. ^ Wasserstrom, Chuck. "Al Avila Discusses St. Thomas University: MLBTR College Series". mlbtraderumors.com. Retrieved June 27, 2016.
  2. ^ Bull, Kevin (July 16, 2001). "Tigers' Avila had been up for other GM jobs before". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  3. ^ O'Brien, David (July 16, 2001). "Avila Promoted To Assistant GM". Sun-Sentinel. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  4. ^ "Pirates Hire Avila As Ass't to GM". Huron Daily Tribune. January 23, 2002. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  5. ^ Simon, Andrew (August 4, 2015). "Avila replaces Dombrowski as Tigers GM". MLB.com. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  6. ^ Fenech, Anthony (August 4, 2015). "Tigers release Dombrowski, promote Avila to GM". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  7. ^ Navarro, Manny (August 4, 2015). "South Florida's Al Avila becomes first Cuban-born GM in baseball". Miami Herald. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  8. ^ Fenech, Anthony (July 5, 2019). "Detroit Tigers GM Al Avila receives 'multi-year' contract extension". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved July 5, 2019.
  9. ^ Reid, Jason (March 19, 1999). "Dodgers' Dominican Dandy Avila to Retire at Year's End". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 4, 2015.
  10. ^ Dougherty, Jesse. "Nationals agree to one-year contract with backup catcher Alex Avila". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2021-02-28.
Sporting positions
Preceded by Detroit Tigers general manager
2015–present
Succeeded by
Incumbent