Alex Avila, Catcher
Date of Birth: 1/29/1987
Birthplace: Hialeah, Florida
College: University of Alabama
Alex Avila, catcher, was first drafted by the Detroit Tigers in 2005 but he opted instead for college. Three years later, he was again drafted by the Tigers. He spent slightly less than two years in the minor leagues before being called up to the Tigers in 2009 for 29 games. The following season, he batted .228 in 104 games with the Tigers.
Avila had his best season in 2011 when he won a Silver Slugger award. That year, he played in 141 games and he had career highs in hits (137), doubles (33), home runs (19), RBIs (82), and batting average (.295). As a catcher, he made 940 putouts and 5 errors with a .995 fielding percentage in 133 games.
In 2013, Avila spent time on the DL, playing in just 102 games. He batted .227 with 75 hits. He finished the 2014 season with 85 hits, 22 doubles, 47 RBIs, and a .218 batting average in 124 games. In the postseason, he had 2 hits, 1 double, and a .222 batting average in 9 at-bats in 3 games.
Avila played in 67 games with the Tigers in 2015. He batted .191 with 34 hits. Defensively, he played 44 games as a catcher and 23 games as a first baseman.
On November 25, 2015, Avila signed a one-year, $2.5 million contract with the White Sox. He played in just 57 games with the White Sox in 2016. He finished the season with 36 hits and a .213 batting average.
Avila returned to the Tigers on a one-year contract on December 23, 2016. He was traded to the Chicago Cubs on July 31, 2017. He finished the 2017 season with 82 hits, 13 doubles, 14 home runs, 49 RBIs, 120 strikeouts to 62 walks, and a .264 batting average in 77 games with the Tigers and 35 games with the Cubs. Defensively, as a catcher in 78 games, he made 33 assists, 533 putouts, and 3 errors. He caught players trying to steal 30.9% of the time. In the postseason, he had one hit in one at-bat.
Avila became a free agent on November 2, 2017.
Career batting statistics for Avila through 2017 include:
- 852 games played
- 622 hits
- 130 doubles
- 87 home runs
- 342 RBIs
- 851 strikeouts to 425 walks
- .243 batting average
Career fielding statistics for Avila as a catcher through 2017 include:
- 765 games played
- 324 assists
- 5,430 putouts
- 31 errors
- .292 caught stealing percentage
- .995 fielding percentage
Avila's father is the assistant general manager and vice president of the Tigers.
Avila and his wife Kristina have one daughter.