Orioles Card "O" the Day

An intersection of two of my passions: baseball cards and the Baltimore Orioles. Updated daily?

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Chito Martinez, 1992 Donruss #558

Admit it, you haven't thought about Chito Martinez in a while. You didn't even know that today was his 47th birthday. It's okay, that's why you're here. So here are some other fun facts about every Oriole fan's third-favorite Martinez:

1. His full name is Reyenaldo Ignacio Martinez.

2. He is the only player in MLB history born in Belize, but played high school baseball in Metairie, Louisiana.

3. Chito was drafted by the Royals in 1984, and signed with the O's as a minor league free agent prior to the 1991 season.

4. In 1991, he made his big league debut after hitting .322/.393/.654 with 20 homers and 50 RBI in only 60 games at AAA Rochester.

5. As a 25-year-old rookie, Martinez more than held his own, batting .269 and slugging .564 for the Birds in 67 games.

6. The first of his 13 home runs in his first major league season was a pinch-hit solo shot against Oakland's Gene Nelson on July 11, 1991. With the Orioles trailing 8-0 in the eighth, he batted in place of Billy Ripken.

7. Chito fell out of favor with the O's after an 0-for-15 start to the 1993 season. He spent the rest of that year in the minors, and never returned to the big leagues.

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