September 13, 2008

Kottaras Is 3rd Canadian-Born Red Sox Catcher

George Kottaras made his major league debut in the first game of Saturday's day-night doubleheader against the Blue Jays. The Scarborough, Ontario native is the third Canadian-born catcher to play for the Red Sox -- and the only one to play for the team at Fenway Park.

Kottaras (#68) took over behind the plate in the 7th inning. He was 0-for-2. He struck out swinging in his first at-bat, but reached on a wild pitch and came around to score Boston's only run in a 8-1 loss. He recorded three putouts, all strikeouts by Devern Hansack.

Looking at BR's list of players from Canada, I counted 21 who played for Boston, including 11 pitchers.

Here are the three Canadian-born catchers in Red Sox history:
                        G    AVG    OBP    SLG
Art McGovern 1905 15 .114 .204 .136
Frank Owens 1905 1 0-for-2
George Kottaras 2008 1 0-for-2
Those 15 games were the extent of McGovern's major league career. He made his debut on April 21 and ended up going 5-for-44, with four singles, one double, and one RBI. He died ten years later, at the age of 33, in Danvers, Mass.

Frank Owens's one game for the Red Sox was his major league debut, at age 19. It came on September 11. McGovern's last major league game came less than one month later, on October 3.

Owens was released in February 1906, but returned to the bigs in 1909 with the White Sox. He also played two years in the Federal League: 1914 (Brooklyn Tip-Tops) and 1915 (Baltimore Terrapins).

If Kottaras stays with the Red Sox and earns some playing time in 2009, he has a very good chance of becoming the greatest Canadian-born catcher in Red Sox history.


laura k said...

he has a very good chance of becoming the greatest Canadian-born catcher in Red Sox history

Should be easy to do!

allan said...

I should probably note that I'm making a big deal out of this because I live in Ontario now myself.

laura k said...

And very near where Kottaras grew up.