Mikie Mahtook
Mahtook with Detroit in 2017
Free agent
Outfielder
Born: (1989-11-30) November 30, 1989 (age 32)
Lafayette, Louisiana
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
MLB debut
April 10, 2015, for the Tampa Bay Rays
MLB statistics
(through 2019 season)
Batting average.235
Home runs33
Runs batted in97
Teams

Michael Anthony Mahtook (/ˈmɑːtʊk/; born November 30, 1989) is an American professional baseball outfielder who is a free agent. He has played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Tampa Bay Rays and Detroit Tigers. Prior to beginning his professional career, Mahtook played college baseball at Louisiana State University.

Early life and education

Mahtook attended St. Thomas More High School in Lafayette, Louisiana and is of Lebanese descent.[1] He played baseball and football in high school.[2] Mahtook enrolled at Louisiana State University (LSU), where he played college baseball for the LSU Tigers baseball team in the Southeastern Conference (SEC).

He was drafted by the Florida Marlins in the 39th round of the 2008 MLB draft, but did not sign to attend LSU. In 2009, Mahtook was a part of the 2009 College World Series championship team. As a junior at LSU, Mahtook led the SEC in batting in league play with a .425 average. He also led the league in on-base percentage (OBP) in league play with .538. He hit 14 home runs, drove in 56 runs and stole 29 bases. He was named a first team All-American by Baseball America.[3] In 2010, he played collegiate summer baseball with the Harwich Mariners of the Cape Cod Baseball League.[4]

Career

Tampa Bay Rays

The Tampa Bay Rays selected Mahtook in the first round, with the 31st overall selection, of the 2011 MLB draft with a compensation pick from the New York Yankees gained when the Yankees signed Rafael Soriano.[5] Before the 2012 season, MLB.com rated Mahtook as the 96th best prospect in baseball.[6] He began the 2012 season with the Charlotte Stone Crabs of the Class A-Advanced Florida State League and was promoted to the Montgomery Biscuits of the Class AA Southern League.[7] He spent the 2013 season with the Montgomery Biscuits.

Mahtook began the 2015 season with the Durham Bulls of the Class AAA International League. On April 10, the Rays promoted Mahtook to the major leagues to replace the injured John Jaso on the roster. He made his major league debut the same day, in a pinch hit at bat.[8] He was recalled to Tampa Bay again from the Durham Bulls on June 2. At the major league level, Mahtook hit .295 for the 2015 season, with 9 home runs in only 105 at-bats.

Due to injuries, Mahtook played just 96 games in 2016, including 65 with the Rays. He took a step backward at the major league level, hitting .195 with 3 home runs in 185 at-bats.

Detroit Tigers

On January 18, 2017, the Rays traded Mahtook to the Detroit Tigers for a player to be named later or cash considerations.[9] On April 28, 2017, the Tigers sent minor league pitcher Drew Smith to the Rays to complete the trade for Mahtook.[10] Mahtook appeared in 109 games for the 2017 Tigers, hitting .276 with 12 home runs.[11]

Mahtook opened the 2018 season as the Tigers' starting left fielder. After batting 4-for-31 (.129) in 11 games, the Tigers optioned him to the Toledo Mud Hens of the International League.[12] He was recalled on May 8, following an injury to center fielder Leonys Martín.[13] He was recalled on July 2, again to replace an injured Martín,[14] and again on August 13 to replace an injured JaCoby Jones.[15] Mahtook finished the 2018 season hitting .202 with 9 home runs in 223 at-bats.

After a strong showing at spring training, Mahtook made the Tigers opening day roster in 2019. After starting the season 0-for-23 with 11 strikeouts, he was designated for assignment on April 11. He was outrighted to the Triple-A Toledo Mud Hens after clearing waivers two days later.[16] He became a minor league free agent on November 7, 2019.[17]

Philadelphia Phillies

On December 18, 2019, Mahtook signed a minor league contract with the Philadelphia Phillies with an invitation to spring training.[18] He became a free agent on November 2, 2020.

Chicago White Sox

On February 26, 2021, Mahtook signed a minor league contract with the Chicago White Sox organization.[19]

Personal life

Mahtook's father, Michael Mahtook, played college football at LSU. He died of a heart attack at the age of 32, when Mikie was four years old.[2] Mahtook's mother, Mary Ann, had breast cancer during his first year at LSU.[20] He has younger twin sisters, Catherine and Christina.[21] Mahtook tested positive for COVID-19 during intake testing during the start of summer training.[22]

References

  1. ^ Demaria, David (May 10, 2017). "Lebanese-American Making an Impact With the Tigers". arabamerica.com. Retrieved July 31, 2017.
  2. ^ a b Smith, Joe (April 3, 2012). "In spirit of his father, Mikie Mahtook is a driven Tampa Bay Rays prospect". Tampa Bay Times. Retrieved March 13, 2014.
  3. ^ Fitt, Aaron; Manuel, John (June 15, 2011). "2011 College All-America Team". Baseball America. Retrieved January 28, 2012.
  4. ^ "Mikie Mahtook". pointstreak.com. Retrieved August 12, 2021.
  5. ^ "Mahtook gets Rays' attention for more than just his name". .tbo.com. Retrieved March 13, 2014.
  6. ^ "2012 Prospect Watch". Mlb.mlb.com. May 24, 2013. Retrieved March 13, 2014.
  7. ^ "Tampa Bay Rays' 2011 first-round pick Mikie Mahtook promoted to Double-A | Tampa Bay Times". Tampabay.com. July 24, 2012. Retrieved March 13, 2014.
  8. ^ "Yelich's RBI single in 10th lifts Marlins past Rays". ESPN.com. Associated Press. April 10, 2015. Retrieved April 11, 2015.
  9. ^ "Detroit Tigers Acquire Mikie Mahtook From Tampa Bay Rays". CBS Local. January 18, 2017. Retrieved January 18, 2017.
  10. ^ "Tigers send minor league pitcher Drew Smith to Rays to complete trade". Detroit Free Press. Retrieved April 29, 2017.
  11. ^ "Tigers' Mikie Mahtook grinding to regain his groove".
  12. ^ Tigers demote starting left fielder Mikie Mahtook to Toledo
  13. ^ Rogacki, Rob (May 8, 2018). "Tigers Tigers place Leonys Martin on 10-day disabled list, recall OF Mikie Mahtook". blessyouboys.com. Retrieved May 15, 2018.
  14. ^ "Leonys Martin to the 10 day disabled list with hamstring injury". Bless You Boys. Retrieved July 2, 2018.
  15. ^ "Tigers recall Mikie Mahtook after JaCoby Jones goes on DL". MLive.com. Retrieved August 13, 2018.
  16. ^ Adams, Steve (April 11, 2019). "Tigers Designate Mikie Mahtook For Assignment". MLB Trade Rumors. Retrieved April 11, 2019.
  17. ^ Woodbery, Evan (November 7, 2019). "Tigers' minor-league free agents include 5 who played in Detroit in 2019". mlive. Retrieved November 8, 2019.
  18. ^ Adams, Steve (December 18, 2019). "Phillies, Mikie Mahtook Agree To Minor League Deal". mlbtraderumors.com. MLB Trade Rumors. Retrieved December 19, 2019.
  19. ^ "Minor MLB Transactions: 2/26/21".
  20. ^ Sutton, Bob (July 16, 2014). "Man on a Mission: Life experiences mold Bulls' Mahtook into big-league prospect". Times News. Retrieved May 8, 2015.
  21. ^ Chastain, Bill (May 8, 2015). "Mahtook thankful for mom's tireless dedication". MLB.com. Retrieved May 8, 2015.
  22. ^ Breen, Matt. "Scott Kingery, Tommy Hunter, Mikie Mahtook, three Phillies coaches test positive for COVID-19". inquirer.com. Retrieved July 12, 2020.