Dec 2, 2018

Wayne Garrett's Older Brother: Adrian Garrett (1966/1970-1976)

Henry Adrian Garrett nicknamed "Smokey" was born on January 3rd, 1943 at Brooksville, Florida. He is the older brother of long time Mets infielder; Wayne Garrett & minor leaguer Jimmy Garrett. 

The six foot three left hand hitter played outfield & catcher positions. Adrian was signed by the Milwaukee Braves in 1961.

In October of 1963 his contract was purchased by the New York Mets, along with that of Amado Samuel. By June of the next year, the Mets sent him back to Milwaukee as a player to be named later.

Garrett made his debut with those Braves in 1966 who now moved the franchise to Atlanta. He would soon get released after playing just four games going 0-3. Garrett was signed by the Philadelphia Phillies & then Chicago Cubs spending three more years at the minor league level. He found himself in Oakland in 1971 & 1972 but played just 14 games in both seasons, not making the post season rosters any year.

He got an invitation to Spring Training from the Chicago Cubs & found himself back on their roster from 1973-1975. On June 29th, 1973 in a game against his brother & the New York Mets, Adrian homered off Tom Seaver in the 7th inning, breaking a 1-1 tie. He helped the Cubs in a 4-3 win at Wrigley. In 1974 he spent most of the year at AAA, playing in just 10 Cubs games. Overall he batted .286 as a pinch hitter, leading the team in that category. In May of 1975, he hit a three run HR off the San Diego Padres Dan Spillner, leading his Cubs to a 3-2 win.

In July 1975 his contract was sold to the California Angels. On September 22nd, he hit a 15th inning, three run HR off Rich Gossage to win a game against the Chicago White Sox. 

After his brief, yet productive, stint with the Angels in 1975, he was called "the Angels' most explosive hitter" in the Angels 1976 media guide. After the 1976 season, he retired from the major leagues. In an eight year career, he hit just .185 with 51 hits in 276 at bats, 11 HRs 8 doubles & 37 RBIs.

Japan: After his MLB run, he went to play in Japan with the Hiroshima Carp from 1977-1979. There he had a fine career hitting 102 HRs averaging a HR every 12.8 at bats. He hit 40 HRs in his first year, the fifth foreigner to hit as many, he made the All Star team & hit three HRs in that game winning the MVP Award.

In 1979 he helped his team win the Nippon Series, being part of the "Red Helmet Lineup" that was the heart of the first Japan team to total 200 HRs.

Retirement: After his playing days he was a longtime successful minor league coach with the Chicago White Sox, Kansas City Royals, Florida Marlins & Cincinnati Reds, helping to develop many future MLB players such as Cliff Floyd, Joey Votto, Daryl Boston, Ron Karkovice & Jay Bruce. 

He has now retired to the role of Spring Training instructional hitting coach. He & his wife live in Austin Texas.

Family: Adrian Garrett's son, Jason Garrett played minor league baseball at the A ball level from 1995-1998.

No comments: