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Mariners' Travis Garcia Returns to Blue Crabs for Playoff Push
WALDORF - 9/11/2009
Infielder Travis Garcia is back in Southern Maryland to help the Blue Crabs aim for an Atlantic League Championship after completing the remainder of the Southern League season with the West Tennessee Diamond Jaxx, Double-A affiliate of the Seattle Mariners. The shortstop had his contract purchased by Seattle on July 7.
“I got the okay from the Mariners, said Garcia. “I was going to be a free agent after the World Series, but they were nice enough to let me go back and stay in playing shape for an extra month and try to win a championship.”
Garcia started the ’09 season with the Blue Crabs, helping the team secure a first-half championship as well as being named the Atlantic League Player of the Month for June and a starter in the All-Star Game. When Garcia departed Southern Maryland for Jackson, Tenn. after having his contract purchased by the Mariners, he was in the Atlantic League top five in several offensive categories and was the Blue Crabs’ team leader in games played, batting average, hits and doubles.
Playing in the first 63 Blue Crabs games this season, Garcia hit .336 with 12 homeruns, 17 doubles and 51 RBI. Garcia put together a hit streak of 17 games in May and June and hit safely in 48 games.
In 44 games with the Diamond Jaxx, Garcia hit .258 with four homeruns and 22 RBI.
“It says a lot about the Blue Crabs pitching staff because the reason that a lot of our pitchers were signed was because they can easily compete on this level. They are comparable with what I see every day here in Double-A. (Kenny) Rayborn and (Ryan) Bicondoa should be getting a chance too and it shows because they have stayed in first place after a lot of us have left, it’s just tough to get those breaks.”
While it took an adjustment period to get used to the pitching and level of play, it has turned out to be a valuable experience for Garcia.
“I’ve learned a lot here. I think I am a better overall player now. You learn a lot from these guys about the game. I hope I can take that and help out Southern Maryland.”
The Blue Crabs will host the first two games of the Atlantic League Division Series on Thursday, Sept. 24 and Friday, Sept. 25 at Regency Furniture Stadium.
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