Today in Tribe History: June 18, 1966
Bob Toth | On 18, Jun 2015
1966 – Future Indians catcher and coach Sandy Alomar, Jr. is born in Salinas, Puerto Rico.
The son of Sandy Alomar, Sr., a 15-year Major Leaguer and longtime coach, both Sandy and his brother Roberto Alomar would reach the professional game as members of the San Diego Padres. The younger Alomar, Roberto, would reach first in April of 1988, but Sandy would play one game in September and another seven the next season, due to a bigger hurdle to clear in All-Star catcher Benito Santiago.
Alomar took full advantage of his new role as starting catcher in Cleveland in his first year with the club. He became the first rookie catcher to start an All-Star Game and was the unanimous winner of the American League Rookie of the Year Award at the end of the season. Injuries would plague him at times throughout his career, but he would make six All-Star teams and be named the MVP of the 1996 games with his tie-breaking two-run home run off of Shawn Estes at Jacobs Field.
He became a free agent following the 2000 season and signed with the Chicago White Sox. They traded him to Colorado in 2002, but he returned as a free agent to Chicago following the season. After a season with the Texas Rangers in 2005 and a half season with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2006, he was traded back to the White Sox a third time. He would wrap up his career with one season with the New York Mets in 2007.
Alomar became a coach with the Tribe in 2010 under Manny Acta and filled in as interim manager when he was fired in 2012. He has remained on the coaching staff under Terry Francona, where he has been both bench coach and first base coach during his stay.