Omar Vizquel Becomes the Oldest Active Position Player.
You don’t have to go far in the baseball realm before hearing the name Omar Vizquel and after 23 seasons you are still going to hear it ring over the speakers. This year he will be playing for his sixth franchise, the Toronto Blue Jays.
This 11 time golden glove winner was a shortstop for most of his baseball career. However, in recent years he has played a little third base as well, which is where he has been playing some for the Jays. He has also fielded from shortstop and second a time or two, so where we will see him in his 24th season is yet to be determined.
The announcement came on Wednesday, just short of a month before birthday. This will make Omar Vizquel the current oldest active position player in the majors. On April 24th he will celebrate his 45th.
In Blue Jays Spring Training his age wasn’t showing great signs of him slowing down. He has been making several incredible plays from third base and has also been showing his stuff at the plate. Right now he is hitting .433 in 15 exhibition games.
After 22 seasons, Omar Vizquel’s record sat at 2,841 career hits, .272 average, and 401 stolen bases in 2,908 games. This record is great, however, it is his fielding that he is best known for. His career fielding percentage at the shortstop position is .985. He has committed only 183 errors in 2,699 games playing there.
The Chicago White Sox were home to Omar Vizquel for the previous two years where he was a utility player for them. He was also a great mentor to younger players and Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopolous probably has that in mind for him too. “We knew what his character was and what kind of guy he was going to be in the clubhouse,” Anthopolous released after beating Baltimore 9-3 in an exhibition game.
Mike McCoy was optioned down to Triple-A Las Vegas with the signing of Omar Vizquel.
So, we’ll get to see Omar Vizquel take the field again this year and hopefully he continues his strong play as we’ve seen so far in Blue Jays Spring Training. But it really doesn’t matter….even if his stats dropped drastically for the year he’ll still be on the minds of those in Cooperstown.