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Yorvit Adolfo Torrealba ([ʝorˈβit toreˈalβa]; born July 19, 1978, in Caracas, Venezuela) is a Major League Baseball catcher who is currently playing for the San Diego Padres. He previously played for the San Francisco Giants, Seattle Mariners, and the Colorado Rockies. He bats and throws right-handed.
Torrealba signed with the San Francisco Giants as a minor league free agent on September 14, 1994. He made his major league debut with the Giants on September 5, 2001 as a September call up. Torrealba became the Giants back up catcher for the 2002 season after a strong spring training. During Torrealba's early career, his defensive abilities were his key strength, particularly his ability to throw out baserunners. He had 136 at-bats in 2001 and 200 in 2002.
Yorvit showed some potential, but when Benito Santiago left via free agency in 2003, the Giants opted to trade for A.J. Pierzynski rather than test Torrealba as a full-time player. He continued to serve as the backup catcher when the Giants signed Mike Matheny prior to the 2005 season; in fact, he played less than when Pierzynski was the starter. Torrealba expressed frustration over his lack of playing time to the media more than once, saying he believed he was capable of playing every day. Manager Felipe Alou publicly discussed the possibility of converting Torrealba into a utility player to get him more playing time, but that never came to pass.
Torrealba was traded, along with pitcher Jesse Foppert, to the Seattle Mariners for outfielder Randy Winn at the trading deadline of the 2005 season. The Mariners were in the midst of a 93-loss season and were rebuilding, and Torrealba competed for the opportunity to be Seattle's starting catcher.
After the 2005 season, the Seattle Mariners traded Torrealba to the Colorado Rockies for Marcos Carvajal after signing Kenji Johjima to be their starting catcher. With the Rockies, Torrealba had a chance to be the starting catcher, but lost the job after he was injured prior to the 2006 season, establishing Danny Ardoin as the Rockies starting catcher. Torrealba's injury was a lingering shoulder injury that was caused by overtraining.
During November of 2007, trade rumors that Torrealba would be traded to the Mets intensified. Both Yorvit and the Mets agreed on a deal for $14.4 million over three years. The deal had seemed to be done, but with the failing of Yorvit's physical he was never sent to New York. It is likely that his physical was not OK'd because of his ongoing shoulder problem. On November 29, 2007, the Rockies re-signed him.
Torrealba began the 2007 season for the Rockies platooning with rookie catcher Chris Iannetta. When Iannetta struggled, Torrealba won the starting job. On May 29, 2007, against the St. Louis Cardinals, Torrealba hit a grand slam, the 3rd of his career. He finished the season with a .255 average and 47 RBIs in 396 at-bats and he threw out only 17 percent of potential base-stealers, down from his success in previous seasons.Torrealba had some big hits for the Rockies during late 2007, when the Rockies won 12 of their last 13 to force a one-game playoff against the San Diego Padres, which the Rockies won. Torrealba homered off Jake Peavy in that game. Torrealba also hit a 3-run home run off of former teammate Liván Hernández in Game 3 of the 2007 National League Championship Series.
Through the 2007 season, Torrealba has posted a .251 batting average with 30 home runs and 173 RBIs in 440 games. As a catcher, he has compiled a .997 fielding average with only seventeen errors in 2587 chances; Torrealba's defense has been above average throughout his career. He has thrown out over 32% of all baserunners attempting to steal. His ability to throw out runners was a career low 19.7% in 2007. Due to his impressive postseason play, Torrealba has recently been dubbed "Mr. Rocktober."
On November 6, 2009, the Rockies decided to go with youngster Chris Iannetta as their primary catcher and declined their 2010 contract option with Torrealba, him making him a free agent.
Yorvit's parents gave him his name when they could not decide between Yorman and Victor. They decided to combine the two into Yorvit.
Torrealba married Milangela Alvarez in 1999, and the couple has a son, Yorvit Eduardo In June 2009, Yorvit Torrealba was unexpectedly placed on the Rockies' restricted list. On June 4, 2009, it was announced that the reason for his absence was that his 11 year old son and "his two uncles" had been kidnapped. The abductors set Yorvit and the other family members free without picking up the $50,000 that had been agreed upon. Yorvit Eduardo tossed the first pitch in the third game of the 2009 National League Division Series against the Phillies.
1 Everth Cabrera | 4 Nick Hundley | 7 Chase Headley | 8 Yorvit Torrealba | 10 Miguel Tejada | 12 Scott Hairston | 13 Chris Denorfia | 15 Jerry Hairston, Jr. | 16 Matt Stairs | 18 Tony Gwynn, Jr. | 21 Heath Bell | 23 Adrian Gonzalez | 25 Will Venable | 27 Jon Garland | 29 Kevin Correia | 33 Clayton Richard | 38 Mat Latos | 39 Ernesto Frieri | 45 Edward Mujica | 46 Tim Stauffer | 47 Ryan Ludwick | 49 Wade LeBlanc | 54 Joe Thatcher | 57 Luke Gregerson | 58 Ryan Webb
2 Lance Zawadzki | 3 Luis Durango | 11 Dusty Ryan | 26 Cesar Carrillo | 28 Aaron Cunningham | 34 Cesar Ramos | 44 Aaron Poreda | 52 Craig Italiano | 55 Adam Russell | 59 Luis Perdomo | 64 Steve Garrison | 65 Radhames Liz
Manager 20 Bud Black | Bench Coach 9 Ted Simmons | 1st Base Coach 17 Rick Renteria | 3rd Base Coach 30 Glenn Hoffman | Hitting Coach 5 Randy Ready | Pitching Coach 36 Darren Balsley | Bullpen Coach 48 Darrel Akerfelds
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