Eric Young
Eric Young, Sr. hits balls to players during warmups, Aug 05 2022.jpg
Young with the Braves in 2022
Atlanta Braves – No. 2
Second baseman / Coach
Born: (1967-05-18) May 18, 1967 (age 55)
New Brunswick, New Jersey
Batted: Right
Threw: Right
MLB debut
July 30, 1992, for the Los Angeles Dodgers
Last MLB appearance
September 19, 2006, for the Texas Rangers
MLB statistics
Batting average.283
Home runs79
Runs batted in543
Stolen bases465
Teams

As coach

Career highlights and awards

Eric Orlando Young Sr. (born May 18, 1967) is an American former Major League Baseball second baseman and left fielder, and current first base coach for the Atlanta Braves of Major League Baseball (MLB). He played college baseball and college football for Rutgers University. He played in the MLB for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Colorado Rockies, Chicago Cubs, Milwaukee Brewers, San Francisco Giants, Texas Rangers, and San Diego Padres.

Raised in New Brunswick, New Jersey, Young attended New Brunswick High School, where he played basketball and football, in addition to baseball.[1]

Baseball career

1990s

Young began his MLB career with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1992, but soon became one of the original Colorado Rockies in 1993. He hit a home run in the Rockies' first-ever home at bat on April 9, 1993, as part of an 11-4 home win over the Montreal Expos.[2] He helped Colorado to its first postseason series appearance in 1995, which they lost to the Atlanta Braves, three games to one. His best seasons came with the Rockies, where he was an All-Star and a Silver Slugger Award winner in 1996 at second base. In 1996, he hit .324, with 8 home runs, 74 RBI and 53 stolen bases.

During the 1990s, Young was one of the top base stealers in the major leagues. He is the Rockies career leader in stolen bases and is in the top 10 in many other offensive categories. On June 30, 1996, he managed to steal second base, third base, and home plate in one inning in a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers. In 1997, fan favorite Young was traded back to Los Angeles for pitcher Pedro Astacio. While in Los Angeles during 19981999, Young continued his consistency by stealing bases and hitting for solid averages.

2000s

Young was traded by the Dodgers to the Chicago Cubs in 1999. In 2000, while a member of the Cubs, he hit .297, with 6 home runs, 98 runs and 54 steals. In 2001, he enjoyed a similar season. In January 2002, Young signed as a free agent with the Milwaukee Brewers. In 2003, he hit 15 home runs, a career-high that almost doubled his previous best of 8 home runs. Young went on to play with the Texas Rangers and the San Diego Padres, where he was mainly used as a pinch runner. On August 1, 2006, Young was released by the Padres. He was subsequently reacquired by the Rangers and joined the team later that month. In late October, he declared free agency, but did not end up playing in the Majors again. Young officially retired as a member of the Colorado Rockies on September 12, 2008.[3] He was honored during a pregame ceremony that same day at Coors Field before the Rockies took on the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Post-playing career

Young's son, Eric Young Jr., has also played professional baseball. Eric Jr. graduated from Piscataway Township High School in 2003 and on August 25, 2009, made his major league debut with the Colorado Rockies when Dexter Fowler was put on the disabled list. Young Jr. currently serves as first base coach for the Washington Nationals, following his father’s footsteps, who coaches first base for the current World Champion, Atlanta Braves.

Young was also an analyst on the sports program Baseball Tonight. He is often mentioned in the term "Souvenir City Chamber of Commerce, Eric Young President" which is the term used by host Steve Berthiaume when showing a home run. He also calls out "Souvenir City!" when showing footage of a home run.[4]

Young served as a running instructor for the Houston Astros and helped with their outfield and base running.[5] He was named the Arizona Diamondbacks first base coach on October 17, 2010.[6] On October 17, 2012, Young was fired from the position.[7][8] He joined the Rockies as the first base coach for the 2014 season.[9] He was fired after the 2016 season.[10] He was hired to be the first base coach of the Atlanta Braves for the 2018 season.[11][12] Young opted out of traveling with the Braves during the 2020 season, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[13][14]

Personal life

As a high school student, Young welcomed his oldest son and namesake, Eric Young Jr., with high-school sweetheart Paula Robinson. Eric Jr. followed him into professional baseball.[15] On December 10, 2005, he married Beyonka Jackson and they welcomed their son Dallas Dupree Young, who is an actor.[16][17][18]

See also

References

  1. ^ Curry, Jack. "A Tough Decision For Rutgers Player", The New York Times, August 22, 1988. Accessed June 28, 2019. "Playing more than one sport is a situation Young is accustomed to. He played football, baseball and basketball all four years at New Brunswick (N.J.) High School without any hitches."
  2. ^ Klis, Mike (9 April 2020). "EY on leadoff homer 27 years ago: "I didn't realize what it meant"". KUSA.com. Retrieved 24 June 2020.
  3. ^ "Cbs4denver.com - Young Will Retire as Member of Rockies on Sept. 12". Archived from the original on 2008-09-28. Retrieved 2008-09-04.
  4. ^ Colla, Nino (17 June 2008). "Baseball Tonight: Losing Credibility by the Pitch". Bleacher Report. Retrieved 24 June 2020.
  5. ^ Stalnaker, Michelle (27 January 2012). "Homegrown Homecoming: Eric Young". Rox Pile. Retrieved 24 June 2020.
  6. ^ "Eric Young named first-base coach for Diamondbacks, son says". The Denver Post. 19 October 2010. Retrieved 24 June 2020.
  7. ^ McLennan, Jim (17 October 2012). "Young, Valera Not Returning As D-backs Coaches". AZ Snake Pit. Retrieved 24 June 2020.
  8. ^ "D-backs fire 1B coach Young, reassign Vallera". ESPN. 18 October 2012. Retrieved 24 June 2020.
  9. ^ Gilbert, Steve (26 November 2013). "Rox finalize '14 staff with additions of Doyle, Young". MLB.com. Retrieved 24 June 2020.
  10. ^ Saunders, Patrick (August 8, 2016). "Rockies don't renew contracts of 4 coaches, including Tom Runnells and Eric Young". Denver Post. Retrieved July 17, 2020.
  11. ^ "Terry Pendleton, Eddie Perez out as Braves coaches, Walt Weiss in". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. November 10, 2017. Retrieved July 17, 2020.
  12. ^ McCartney, Cory (10 November 2017). "Braves add Walt Weiss, Eric Young Sr. to coaching staff; remove Terry Pendleton, Eddie Perez". FOX Sports. Retrieved 24 June 2020.
  13. ^ "Freddie Freeman among four Braves players to test positive for coronavirus". ESPN.com. Associated Press. July 4, 2020. Retrieved July 4, 2020.
  14. ^ Burns, Gabriel (July 4, 2020). "Braves coach Eric Young Sr. opts out of 2020 season". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved July 4, 2020.
  15. ^ "Eric Young Jr. BB". NJSports.com. Upper Case Editorial Services, LLC. Retrieved December 31, 2021.
  16. ^ Cooney, Mike (March 27, 2018). "Eric Young Sr". Society for American Baseball Research. Retrieved December 31, 2021.
  17. ^ Yates, Clinton (November 5, 2021). "Braves' Eric Young Sr. gets redemption". Andscape. Retrieved November 8, 2021.
  18. ^ Bowman, Mark (February 14, 2021). "Eric Young Sr. proud of son, a budding actor". MLB.com. Retrieved November 8, 2021.
Preceded byMatt Williams Arizona Diamondbacks First Base Coach 2011–2012 Succeeded bySteve Sax