Former MDC baseball catcher Victor Caratini recently snagged a spot with the defending World Series champion Chicago Cubs. Caratini, a native of Puerto Rico, joins a long list of former MDC stars who have made it to Major League Baseball (MLB), including Hall of Famer Mike Piazza, Mickey Rivers, Bucky Dent, Alex Fernandez, Andrés Torres, Raúl Ibañez, Warren Cromartie, Plácido Polanco and John Cangelosi. Caratini, a switch-hitter, was outstanding during his only season at MDC, batting .377 with a .467 on-base percentage and a 1.016 OPS (on-base plus slugging percentage). He was named the Southern Conference Player of the Year and first-team All-State. MDC coach Danny Price said he almost did not sign Caratini. A coaching friend told him about Caratini, but Price already had enough catchers on his roster. “I was told, ‘If you don’t take him, he will beat you.’ So, I took him,” Price said, “and boy, he turned out to be a great player and a great person. I’m very happy for him.” Caratini, who played mostly third base for MDC, was picked by the Atlanta Braves in the second round of the 2013 MLB Draft. On July 31, 2014, Caratini was traded to the Cubs. On June 28 of this year, Caratini made his MLB debut. At the time of his promotion to the majors, he was less than two months from his 24th birthday. “He was a team leader for us,” said MDC pitching coach Kevin Long. “His skills jumped through the roof.” – WV
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