Harold Garcia ties Joe Altobelli’s FSL hitting streak record

Last night, in a game that finished very late due to a 2-hour rain delay, Harold Garcia, the Clearwater Threshers’ 23-year-old second baseman, tied a record that had lasted almost 60 years in the FSL (Joe Altobelli, 1951), hitting in his 36th consecutive game (he was 1/3 with a first-inning HR and a HBP).

NOTE: GARCIA BROKE THE RECORD SUNDAY, JULY 4th, WITH AN RBI SINGLE IN THE FIRST INNING.

Below are some details on his Philies’ career.

Garcia began his career in the VSL in 2005 as an 18-year-old. He was born in Maracaibo, VZ. His first two years in the VSL he looked like he’d never make the trip to the states, hitting only about .250 overall, although he drew a ton of walks and hit with more power in 2006. In 2007 he had a solid year as the regular 2B in the VSL, hitting for a higher average, and stealing a few more bases.

He went to the GCL in 2007 as a 21-year-old and put up a 900+ OPS as a good player his age should have. He drew enough walks and 40% of his hits were for extra bases. He was Lakewood’s regular 2B last year, and posted a 765 OPS in a league where the average OPS is in the 600’s. He also stole 42 bases (in 54 tries). He’s a switch-hitter who is stronger from the left side, posting a 962 OPS versus righties this year versus 720 against portsiders. He’s always hit righties, one of his significant improvements over the last three years is he’s improved as a RH hitter, going from .196 in the GCL to .222 at Lakewood to .300 for the Threshers.

The guy is tiny and wears one of those oversized helmets that make everyone look like Marvin the Martian, particularly small guys. He’s headed to Reading as soon as his streak ends (or he breaks the record), and probably on the fringe of our top-ten prospects right now, even given his age. If he hits at all at Reading, he’ll make the 40-man roster this winter. He plays some 3B now as well as 2B, started playing there a bit more this season.

23 thoughts on “Harold Garcia ties Joe Altobelli’s FSL hitting streak record

  1. Note: everyone in the minors wears those oversized helmets , it is the rule.

    Garcia played mostly 3B in the VSL, though he played 2B and SS as well. Typical lineup was Garcia at 3B, Jaime Morales at SS, Yonderman Rodriguez at 2B also Rene Fuenmayor, and then Cesar Hernandez signed late in the season. Hernandez and Fuenmayor played almost exclusively at 2B and the others shifted alot.

    I think Garcia can move up and fill a role.

  2. He may be tiny, but, from what I can see, he’s almost exactly the same size (perhaps taller) as Joe Morgan. That guy did alright for a tiny player. I’m not worried about his size too much.

  3. Congrats to Mr. Garcia! I should have taken him when I was playing beat the streak on Milb! Joe Altobelli is good company! Happy 4th to all.

  4. I had Garcia in my personal top 25 at the start of the season. Looks like he could make a run at top 15 if he hits at all at Reading. Some of those doubles he has hit at Clearwater could turn into Homers, if he is able to hit AA pitching. He may have forced his way onto the 40 man, at the end of the season.

  5. cant wait to see Garcia at reading, thats the place where he will get me excited if he hits there,

  6. Harold especially caught my attention when he started the first 20 or so games at second for Zulia in the VWL this past season. I seem to recall he had a double digit game hitting streak there too. He was replaced a second by Aberto Callaspo and they both put up similar numbers for the VWL season. Now Callaspo is hitting .273 (.720 ops) for the K.C. Royals. Interesting to see what Harold can do at AA.

  7. Congrats to the kid. He’s proving that you don’t have to necessarily be age-appropriate for every level to still be well-regarded by the top brass.

    Random side note; I actually played high school ball with Altobelli’s grandson. Joe used to be the color announcer for the AAA Red Wings here for a while…but I think he stepped down a year or two ago.

  8. With Garcia at 2b, it won’t be long before we have a starting infield at Reading made up entirely of legitimate (if marginal) prospects. When was the last time that happened?

  9. With chase in his way, there is no room for this kid to play even if he hits at reading.

  10. I think we’re all anxious to see what he can do at Reading. He may not be the biggest guy, but if he can play a speed game while hitting for a good average he’ll be a valuable player. Even if he is blocked by Utley, he’s could still be useful as a utility player if he can play 3rd a bit too, and maybe be used as a trade chip.

  11. There’s nothing wrong with having a better Wilson Valdez out there (although he’s been playing pretty well as of late). I think people forget the fact that not every player in the minors has to turn out to be a superstar.

  12. That’s a good way to get yourself noticed. Do it in Reading and he’ll be in Philly within 2/3 years playing a utility role.

  13. Garcia was not in the lineup today for Clearwater. Maybe he is headed north to Reading.

  14. Evercince Harold was a little boy he wanted to play basesball. I have pictures when he was two years old playing with his plastic toy baseball bat.He always took basesball seriously.He worked really hard everyday to get where he is now.

    father

  15. ino, Harold is doing a great job and the Phillies are lucky to have him in their system. Go Harold and Go Phillies!

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