Aug 6, 2015

Former Hawaiian Islands Born Mets Pitcher: Tyler Yates (2004)

Tyler Kali Yates was Born on August 7, 1977 in Lihue-Kauai, Hawaii. The six foot four right handed pitcher attended the University of Hawaii and got drafted in the 23rd round of the 1988 draft by the Oakland A’s.

He was only the 13th player to come out of the Hawaiian Islands and make it to the big leagues.

Yates was primarily a reliever in the Oakland organization, & then suffered a setback when he needed Tommy John surgery. At the end of 2001 he was traded (along with Mark Guthrie) to the New York Mets for David Justice.

The Mets converted him into a starting pitcher and he made his MLB debut on April 9th, 2004 in Montreal against the Expos. He pitched six innings allowing no runs but he got no decision in the Mets 3-2 win. In his next start coming at Shea Stadium, he was hammered by the Atlanta Braves, allowing six runs over two innings pitched.

Then he got his first career win in his next start against the Montreal Expos also at Shea Stadium. In that game he allowed one run in 5.2 innings of work.

After that, things went downhill, Yates lost three straight games and was back in the bull pen by June. He earned a win in relief on September 18th benefiting from a Mike Cameron 10th inning RBI sac fly.

He also was credited with two holds in the final two weeks of the season. He finished the year at 2-4 with a 6.36 ERA, allowing six HRs & 33 earned runs in 46 innings pitched.

He needed rotator cuff surgery which wiped out his 2005 season and the Mets let him go to free agency after that. He signed with the Atlanta Braves and came back to go 8-6 with three saves and an ERA of five over two seasons.

He was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Tim Redmond in 2008 going 6-3 in the Steel City. After going 0-2 in 2009 with a 7.50 ERA he needed a second Tommy John surgery which finished off his career.

In a five season career Yates was 12-17 with a four saves, gathering 222 strike outs & 135 walks in 248 innings pitched while posting a 5.12 ERA in 239 appearances.

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