Today In Brewer History: Happy Anniversary, Martin Maldonado

The lower levels of the minor leagues are largely populated with guys who could share the same story: They were seen as prospects at one point but didn't immediately catch on or had a weakness in their game exposed and, as such, they ended up spending longer than they'd expected working their way up the ladder and having their prospect status revoked. Many of those guys hold on for a long time, though, and stories like Martin Maldonado's are a good reason for them not to give up.

On this day in 2007 the Brewers signed Maldonado as a minor league free agent. He was only 20 but had already spent three years in the Angels organization, where he'd never advanced beyond rookie ball or played more than 36 games in a season. His bat wasn't much to write home about (he's still just a .238/.316/.332 career hitter in the minors) but he was solid defensively so the Brewers kept him around because you can never have too many catchers.

Maldonado has hung around for quite a while now as a relative afterthought, but he had a breakout year offensively in 2011. In his eighth pro season Maldonado hit .287/.373/.436 in 103 games between AA and AAA and earned his first callup to the majors. Five seasons after the Angels cast him aside, Maldonado is on a big league 40 man roster and probably has a good chance to catch some games for the Brewers this season. He's still only 25, so it's possible he has a long career ahead of him.

With help from the B-Ref Play Index, happy birthday today to:

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Brew Crew Ball

You must be a member of Brew Crew Ball to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Brew Crew Ball. You should read them.

Join Brew Crew Ball

You must be a member of Brew Crew Ball to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Brew Crew Ball. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9351_tracker