J. P. Arencibia
|J. P. Arencibia|
|Toronto Blue Jays – No. 9|
January 5, 1986 |
|Bats: Right||Throws: Right|
|August 7, 2010 for the Toronto Blue Jays|
(through May 21, 2013)
|Runs batted in||158|
|Career highlights and awards|
As a teenager, Arencibia attended Westminster Christian high school in Miami, Florida, which has produced other major-league players, most notably Alex Rodriguez and Doug Mientkiewicz. Arencibia also played football and basketball in high school, but excelled in baseball. He later played for the Under-18 Florida Bombers, alongside future major leaguers Mat Latos, Gaby Sánchez, Yonder Alonso, and Jon Jay.
Arencibia attended the University of Tennessee up until his draft day selection by Toronto in 2007.3 Prior to the 2007 draft, questions were raised about Arencibia's defensive abilities as a catcher. After drafting him, however, the Blue Jays decided to keep him as a catcher, rather than convert him to another position, such as first base.citation needed While attending college, Arencibia played with Chase Headley, Luke Hochevar, and Julio Borbon. In the summer of 2006, Arencibia played baseball in Cuba with David Price, and would later be drafted 20 positions behind Price in 2007.4
Arencibia was drafted 21st overall by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 2007 Major League Baseball Draft.5 He was assigned to Toronto's Low A ball affiliate, the Auburn Doubledays of the New York–Penn League. Arencibia struggled during the early part of the season but hit well during the stretch and into the playoffs, helping the Doubledays win the NY-Penn League championship. He began the 2008 season with the Dunedin Blue Jays of the Florida State League. By the FSL all-star break, he led the league or was near the top in many offensive categories, finishing the first half of the season batting .315 with 13 homers, 22 doubles and 62 RBI. He was named as the starting catcher for the Eastern Division in the FSL All-Star Game.
After the game, the Blue Jays promoted him to their Double-A team, the New Hampshire Fisher Cats of the Eastern League. During the off-season of 2008, Arencibia took part in the Arizona Fall League as a member of the Phoenix Desert Dogs. For the 2009 season, Arencibia was promoted to the Las Vegas 51s, the Blue Jays' Triple-A affiliate in the Pacific Coast League.5
Arencibia was promoted to the major leagues on August 4, 2010 with a batting average of .303 and leading the PCL with 31 HRs. He was called up to replace the injured John Buck, who had been placed on the 15 day disabled list for a right thumb laceration.6 He started in his first major league game for the Toronto Blue Jays on August 7, 2010 against the Tampa Bay Rays. In his first at-bat, Arencibia hit a 2-run home run on the first pitch from James Shields, becoming the 28th player in history to hit a home run on his first major league pitch.7 In his following plate appearances, he hit a double, a single and then a solo home run and received a curtain call from the fans at the Rogers Centre while finishing the game just a triple shy of hitting for the cycle. Arencibia is the fifth player ever to hit two home runs in his first game.8 Arencibia also became the first person in the modern era with 4 hits and 2 home runs in a major league debut; he is also the first Blue Jay to have four hits in a debut, and the first Blue Jay since Junior Felix to hit a home run on his first at bat.9
Arencibia was the starting catcher at the Blue Jays' home opener. He hit the team's first home run of the season, a 2-run homer to deep center. He finished the night with 2 home runs and a triple.12 On May 7, he broke up Justin Verlander's perfect game, being walked after a 12 pitch at-bat.13 On June 3 against the Baltimore Orioles, Arencibia hit his first career grand slam in an 8–4 victory. As of June 4, Arencibia led all major league rookies with 9 home runs, which is already a Blue Jays club record, surpassing the previous record of five, shared by Pat Borders (1988) and Greg Myers (1990).14
In a game against the Kansas City Royals on August 25, Arencibia hit his 20th home run of the season, tying the single season record for home runs by Blue Jays catchers (John Buck hit 20 in 2010).15 While playing at home against the Tampa Bay Rays on August 29, Arencibia stole a base, his first career stolen base on his first attempt.
In a game against the Boston Red Sox on September 7, Arencibia hit his 21st home run of the season, breaking a tie with John Buck for most home runs by a Blue Jays' catcher in a single season.
On May 16, 2012, Arencibia reached 100 RBI for his career in a 4-1 win against the New York Yankees. The following day, in a game against the New York Mets, Arencibia set a career high for RBI in a game with 6, in a 14-5 win. Arencibia also hit 2 home runs, giving him the first 3-game home run streak of his career.18 Arencibia was named AL Player of the Week for May 14–20, hitting .360 with 4 home runs, 10 RBI, 7 runs scored an a slugging percentage of .920. He is the first catcher in Blue Jays history to win the award.19 On July 25, in a game against the Oakland Athletics, Arencibia was hit on the right hand by a pitch while catching. Arencibia finished the inning, but left the game for precautionary reasons. X-rays came back positive for a fracture, and he was expected to miss 6 weeks.20 Arencibia began a rehab assignment with the Class-A Dunedin Blue Jays on September 2.21 He finished the season with a .233 batting average with 18 home runs and 56 RBI.
On May 6, 2013, Arencibia hit a two-run home run to give the Blue Jays an 8–7 lead against the Tampa Bay Rays, in a game where they had been down 7–0 after the third inning. The comeback victory was the largest by the Blue Jays since a 12-11 win in 2007, also against Tampa Bay.22
- Griffin, Richard (February 26, 2012). "Griffin: Toronto Blue Jays catcher J.P. Arencibia stickhandles question about beloved Maple Leafs". TheStar.com. Retrieved February 26, 2013.
- Randel, Steve (December 31, 2012). "Latin Link: Blue Jays' J.P. Arencibia flying high with confidence". Retrieved February 26, 2013.
- "MLB.com 2007 Draft Tracker". Mlb.mlb.com. January 1, 2011. Retrieved November 12, 2011.
- Brown, Tim (March 8, 2011). "Arencibia's climb was mom-approved". Yahoo.com. Retrieved July 26, 2012.
- Greene, Ryan (April 21, 2009). "Jays’ top catching prospect Arencibia looks to continue rapid rise". Las Vegas Sun. Retrieved April 30, 2009.
- "Time to shine". Rogers Sportsnet. August 4, 2010. Retrieved August 7, 2010.
- Justin Piercy (August 7, 2010). "Jays' Arencibia debuts to rave reviews". CBC Sports. Retrieved August 7, 2010.
- "Curtain call". Rogers Sportsnet. August 7, 2010. Retrieved August 7, 2010.
- "J.P. Arencibia sparks Blue Jays' homer parade with 2 in first MLB game". ESPN. August 7, 2010. Retrieved August 7, 2010.
- "Blue Jays send Arencibia down to Triple-A Las Vegas". Tsn.ca. August 18, 2010. Retrieved November 12, 2011.
- "Blue Jays recall Arencibia; activate Purcey from DL". Tsn.ca. January 9, 2010. Retrieved November 12, 2011.
- "Blue Jays whips Twins on Opening Night". Tsn.ca. February 4, 2011. Retrieved November 12, 2011.
- Zwelling, Arden. "MLB.com Gameday | bluejays.com". Toronto.bluejays.mlb.com. Retrieved November 12, 2011.
- Miller, Doug (May 23, 2011). "MLB.com Gameday | bluejays.com". Toronto.bluejays.mlb.com. Retrieved November 12, 2011.
- Day, Gavin (August 26, 2011). "Kansas City Royals at Toronto Blue Jays – August 25, 2011". Toronto.bluejays.mlb.com. Retrieved November 12, 2011.
- "2011 Regular Season MLB Baseball C Fielding Statistics". Espn.go.com. Retrieved November 12, 2011.
- Chisholm, Greg (April 5, 2012). "Arencibia's homer in 16th wins historic opener". mlb.com. Retrieved April 5, 2012.
- Blue Jays clout 5 homers, blow out Mets
- Blue Jays catcher J.P. Arencibia named AL Player of the Week
- "Arenibia breaks hand; A's hand Jays franchise-worst SO loss". TSN.ca.
- Chisholm, Gregor (September 3, 2012). "Arencibia getting closer to making return". MLB.com. Retrieved September 3, 2012.
- "Arencibia homer in ninth caps big Jays rally for win over Rays". TSN.ca. May 6, 2013. Retrieved May 7, 2013.
- Blue Jays: J.P. Arencibia unlikely to catch knuckleballer R.A. Dickey, skipper suggests Toronto Star. Accessed on February 23, 2013.
- Career statistics and player information from MLB, or Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or The Baseball Cube, or Baseball-Reference (Minors)
- J. P. Arencibia on Twitter