From Red Sox ‘Zero’ to Yankees’ Hero; New York’s LaMarre Thriving
Five at-bats. One walk. Two strikeouts. No hits.
That was Ryan LaMarre's career statline with the Boston Red Sox, the organization to which he belonged back in 2016. The Yankees are the fourth team that he's played for since that season, and his sixth overall. Now, at age 32, it might be time that we start taking Ryan LaMarre a bit more seriously.
Because what I didn't mention about that five-year stretch between the Red Sox and the Yankees, is that Ryan LaMarre became a pretty reliable ballplayer, the kind of player that any team should want to stash in their cupboard.
LaMarre had all the potential in the world as a youngster, enough to warrant a second round selection in the 2010 MLB Draft by the Cincinnati Reds. He spent SIX seasons in the minor leagues, before finally earning his call-up to the Reds in 2015. After 21 games, and just two hits, he was done. He was onto his next franchise, where the tail was largely the same. Great numbers in the minor leagues, and nothing to show for it at the big league level. 2017 was spent in Oakland, which became another year of single-digit at-bats, and an increasingly fading dream.
2018, however, held a bit of hope.
It was his fourth team in as many seasons, his time with the Reds now out of sight in the rearview mirror. His current stop was the Minnesota Twins, a team that gave him more of an opportunity than he was afforded in the past. With the Twins, he thrived. In 43 games, he managed a batting average of .263, and collected his first big-league hit in three years. Despite his best efforts, he was waived by the Twins, claimed by the White Sox, and somehow, still managed to perform. His average with the White Sox eclipsed the .300 marker, and he hit his first big league home run. That one was promptly followed by his second.
2019, however, saw a dip in production. His return to Minnesota proved costly, and he was out of baseball for the entirety of the COVID-plagued 2020 season. You can look at the hand of cards Ryan LaMarre was dealt, and identify his current situation, with the New York Yankees, as possibly one of his last.
So, when you watched LaMarre celebrate with his teammates after leading the Yankees to a walk-off win, and sweep, of the Phillies, you may not have known it at the time. You know now, however, that Ryan LaMarre has worked hard for the opportunity that's been presented to him, and will continue to follow his journey wherever it takes him.