Was the 2008 winner of the Tony Conigliaro Award, given by the Boston BBWAA to the major league player who has overcome adversity through the attributes of spirit, determination and courage-trademarks of the former Red Sox star outfielder. Was a 2004 inductee into the Rhode Island Italian-American Hall of Fame. Named either first or second-team all-state in baseball, track, basketball and volleyball at Bishop Hendricken High School (Warwick, R.I.)…remains one of only two Rhode Island natives to be selected in the first round of the regular phase of the June Draft, along with SS Bill Almon (Padres, 1974)…between 1965-86 the June Draft consisted of two phases.
Begins his first season as major league field coordinator, a newly created position that was finalized Nov 17, 2017…in this role, he will assist Manager Kevin Cash and bench coach Charlie Montoyo during the game, continue to work with outfielders and focus on continued development of major league players ... Spent the last three seasons (2015-17) as the Rays first base coach…was 33 years old when named to the post on Dec 19, 2014, and still remains the youngest coach in Rays history, supplanting Billy Hatcher, who was 37 as the first base coach for the inaugural Devil Rays in 1998 ... Prior to joining the coaching staff, he spent four seasons (2011-14) in the Rays organization as a special assistant, baseball operations-a position he accepted in January 2011 upon retiring from an 11-year career as an outfielder.
Selected by the Rays in the first round (No. 6 overall) of the 2000 June Draft…played parts of six major league seasons with the Rays (2003-04, 2006-08, 2010) and Red Sox (2009) ... Finished third in the 2003 AL Rookie of the Year balloting behind KC Angel Berroa and NYY Hideki Matsui…received five first-place votes… led AL rookies with a .289 avg., 89 runs, 8 3B, 27 SB and 184 hits, one shy of Ted Williams' rookie season…his .289 avg. remains the club record for a rookie ... Amassed 39 hits in his first month in the major leagues (April 2003), still a club record for any player in April…is the last rookie to lead the AL in outfield assists (15) and one of only nine to do it since 1931 ... In his first two seasons, he hit .285 (329-for-1,155) with 27 HR and 44 SB ... Missed the entire 2005 season due to knee and elbow surgeries, and was hampered by injuries for the rest of his career…was ultimately forced to retire at the age of 29…played his final game in Game 1 of the 2010 ALDS vs. TEX ... Drove in the go-ahead run in the Rays 3-1 win in Game 7 of the 2008 ALCS vs. BOS…his 5thinning single off Jon Lester put the Rays up, 2-1 ... Is one of three players in Rays history to hit a home run in the World Series, coming in Game 5 at PHI in 2008 off Ryan Madson ... His only year outside the organization was 2009 when he signed as a free agent with the Red Sox.