All-Time Indians: Sandy Alomar Jr.

Name: Santos Velazquez Alomar Jr. Position: Catcher
Nick Name: Sandy Number: 15
Tribe Time: 1990-2000 DOB: 06/18/1966
Accolades: Rookie of the Year (1990), 6 Time All-Star (1990-1992,1996-1998), Gold Glove (1990), Top 20 MVP (1997)
Stats G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI TB BB SO SB CS SB% OBP SLG AVG OPS ISOP
Best Season (1997) 125 451 63 146 37 0 21 83 246 19 48 0 2 0% .354 .545 .324 .899 .222
Career 985 3409 416 944 194 8 92 453 1430 165 386 24 22 52% .315 .419 .277 .734 .143
Post Season Career 49 173 17 37 9 1 5 28 63 7 26 0 1 0% .247 .364 .214 .611 .150

The entrance of Sandy Alomar with the Cleveland Indians was a changing of an era. In 1989 the Indians traded their best player, Joe Carter, to the Padres for two young players, Alomar and Carlos Baerga, who became 2/9th of the starting line up from 1990-1996. By 1992 along with those two players, the backbone of the powerhouse 1990s Cleveland Indians had been set with players like Charles Nagy, Albert Belle, Jim Thome and Kenny Lofton. Having a solid backstop proved integral to the Tribe as Alomar’s peak seasons (1994-1998) coincided directly with the Prime of the Indians as a team. Sandy did have some problems with injuries during his career, but when his career ended, he solidly stood among the top Indians catchers of all time.

In 1990 Alomar came on strong, winning both the AL Rookie of the Year and the Gold Glove at catcher. This was his first and last such award because of the emergence of another young catcher named Pudge Rodriguez. In 1997 the stars aligned for Sandy. He was the healthiest he had ever been in his career and he really showed what everyone expected after his rookie campaign. He set career highs in home runs, doubles, RBI, hits and runs and was chosen for his fifth All-Star game. The game was played at Jacob’s Field in Cleveland and Sandy put on a show for his hometown fans. In the seventh inning, he hit a two run home run to break a 1-1 tie and score what ended up being the winning run for the American League. For his efforts he was given the MVP in that game. Sandy ended up repeating his power stroke in the post season, becoming the first player to ever hit a home run in an All-Star game and every round of the playoffs including the World Series in a single season. He excelled in that World Series as well, hitting .367 and setting Indians records for most at bats (30) and RBI (10) in a single playoff series.

Sandy Alomar’s playoff numbers shine for his career as well, aided by his five appearances with the Tribe. He holds the Indians record for most postseason doubles and ranks in the top five in every other couting stat except walks. For the regular season, Sandy ranks second all time among catchers with 92 home runs (trailing Victor Martinez) and fifth all time in RBI. His .277 batting average is the third best among catchers with more than 400 games played. As an Indian the only two catchers that can even compare to Alomar are Martinez and Jim Hegan.

Alomar has been inducted into the Cleveland Indians Hall of Fame, but the Indians policy of only retiring the numbers of MLB Hall of Famers makes it unlikely that his #15 will be retired. Since ending his playing days he has rejoined the Indians and currently serves as the team’s bench coach (since 2011). 

 

Sandy Alomar

Joseph Coblitz

About Joseph Coblitz

Joseph is the primary writer and editor of BurningRiverBaseball.com and has been since it's inception in 2011. He is a graduate of the University of Akron and currently resides in Goodyear, Arizona the Spring Training home of the Cleveland Indians.

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