Ayala with the Baltimore Orioles
|Born:January 12, 1978|
Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico
|March 31, 2003, for the Montreal Expos|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 29, 2013, for the Atlanta Braves|
|Earned run average||3.34|
Luis Ignacio Ayala Hernández (born January 12, 1978) is a Mexican former professional baseball pitcher. He played in Major League Baseball for the Montreal Expos/Washington Nationals, New York Mets, Minnesota Twins, Florida Marlins, New York Yankees, Baltimore Orioles, and Atlanta Braves. He is 6 feet 2 inches (1.88 m) and weighs 190 pounds (86 kg). He bats and throws right-handed.
Baseball is a bat-and-ball game played between two opposing teams who take turns batting and fielding. The game proceeds when a player on the fielding team, called the pitcher, throws a ball which a player on the batting team tries to hit with a bat. The objectives of the offensive team are to hit the ball into the field of play, and to run the bases—having its runners advance counter-clockwise around four bases to score what are called "runs". The objective of the defensive team is to prevent batters from becoming runners, and to prevent runners' advance around the bases. A run is scored when a runner legally advances around the bases in order and touches home plate. The team that scores the most runs by the end of the game is the winner.
In baseball, the pitcher is the player who throws the baseball from the pitcher's mound toward the catcher to begin each play, with the goal of retiring a batter, who attempts to either make contact with the pitched ball or draw a walk. In the numbering system used to record defensive plays, the pitcher is assigned the number 1. The pitcher is often considered the most important player on the defensive side of the game, and as such is situated at the right end of the defensive spectrum. There are many different types of pitchers, such as the starting pitcher, relief pitcher, middle reliever, lefty specialist, setup man, and the closer.
Major League Baseball (MLB) is a professional baseball organization, the oldest of the four major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada. A total of 30 teams play in the National League (NL) and American League (AL), with 15 teams in each league. The NL and AL were formed as separate legal entities in 1876 and 1901 respectively. After cooperating but remaining legally separate entities beginning in 1903, the leagues merged into a single organization led by the Commissioner of Baseball in 2000. The organization also oversees Minor League Baseball, which comprises 256 teams affiliated with the Major League clubs. With the World Baseball Softball Confederation, MLB manages the international World Baseball Classic tournament.
In 1997, as a 19-year-old, Ayala started playing in the Mexican Baseball League as a relief pitcher. He spent five years with the Saraperos de Saltillo, where he was 10–3 with a 2.92 earned run average (ERA). in 65 games. He was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Colorado Rockies in 1999 and spent time with their A ball team before the Rockies sold him back to Saltillo in 2001.[ citation needed ].
In baseball and softball, a relief pitcher or reliever is a pitcher who enters the game after the starting pitcher is removed due to injury, ineffectiveness, fatigue, ejection, or for other strategic reasons, such as inclement weather delays or pinch hitter substitutions. Relief pitchers are further divided informally into various roles, such as closers, setup men, middle relief pitchers, left/right-handed specialists, and long relievers. Whereas starting pitchers usually rest several days before pitching in a game again due to the number of pitches thrown, relief pitchers are expected to be more flexible and typically pitch more games but with fewer innings pitched. A team's staff of relievers is normally referred to metonymically as a team's bullpen, which refers to the area where the relievers sit during games, and where they warm-up prior to entering the game.
The Saraperos de Saltillo is a Triple-A Minor League Baseball team which plays in the Mexican League. They have won three championships. Their home ballpark is the Estadio de Béisbol Francisco I. Madero in Saltillo, Coahuila. The 1979 Saraperos were recognized as one of the 100 greatest minor league teams of all time.
In 2002, he was purchased from Saltillo by the Montreal Expos. He played with the AAA Ottawa Lynx in 2002. At the end of the 2002 season, he was signed by the Arizona Diamondbacks, but two months later returned to the Expos as a Rule 5 pick.
The Montreal Expos were a Canadian professional baseball team based in Montreal, Quebec. The Expos were the first Major League Baseball (MLB) franchise located outside the United States. They played in the National League (NL) East Division from 1969 until 2004. Following the 2004 season, the franchise relocated to Washington, D.C., and became the Washington Nationals.
The Ottawa Lynx were a Minor League Baseball team that competed in the Triple-A International League (IL) from 1993 to 2007. The team's home field was Lynx Stadium in Ottawa, Ontario. Over 15 seasons, the team was an affiliate of the Montreal Expos (1993–2002), Baltimore Orioles (2003–2006), and Philadelphia Phillies (2007). At the time, it was the only IL franchise in Canada.
Ayala made his major league debut on March 31, 2003 for the Expos against the Atlanta Braves, working two innings of relief and allowing one run and four hits. His 10 relief wins that season were tied for 2nd most in MLB. [ citation needed ]Ayala pitched well for the Expos/Nationals from 2003 through 2005. Over the three years, he averaged 70 appearances per year, and compiled an ERA of 2.75, and led the National League with 62 holds. In 2004 he ranked eighth in appearances with 81.
The Atlanta Braves are an American professional baseball franchise based in the Atlanta metropolitan area. The franchise competes in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member of the National League (NL) East division. The Braves played home games at Atlanta–Fulton County Stadium from 1966 to 1996, and Turner Field from 1997 to 2016. Since 2017, their home stadium has been SunTrust Park, a new stadium 10 miles (16 km) northwest of downtown Atlanta in the Cumberland neighborhood of Cobb County. The Braves play spring training games at CoolToday Park in North Port, Florida.
The Washington Nationals are a professional baseball team based in Washington, D.C.. The Nationals compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) East division. From 2005 to 2007, the team played in RFK Stadium; since 2008 their home stadium has been Nationals Park on South Capitol Street in Southeast D.C., near the Anacostia River.
The 2003 Major League Baseball season ended when the Florida Marlins defeated the New York Yankees in a six-game 2003 World Series. The Detroit Tigers set the American League record for losses in a season, with 119, and the Marlins became the first team to win the championship twice as a wild card.
Ayala injured his elbow on the last pitch of a 2006 World Baseball Classic game. As a result, he underwent Tommy John surgery on March 30, 2006 and was knocked out for the entire 2006 season.[ citation needed ] Ayala began the 2007 season on the 60-day disabled list due to still recovering from the Tommy John surgery he previously had. After working eight rehab games in the minors, in which he allowed one run in 9-2/3 innings, on June 20, he was called up to the majors. He made his return with the Nationals on June 22, 2007, pitching 2/3 of an inning and giving up no runs and only one hit. For the season, he went 2–2 with 6 holds, one save, and a 3.19 ERA in 44 appearances.
The 2006 World Baseball Classic was the inaugural tournament between national baseball teams that included players from Major League Baseball. It was held from March 3 to 20 in stadiums that are in and around Tokyo, Japan; San Juan, Puerto Rico; Lake Buena Vista, Florida; Phoenix, Arizona; Scottsdale, Arizona; Anaheim, California; and San Diego, California.
The 2006 Major League Baseball season ended with the National League's St. Louis Cardinals winning the World Series with the lowest regular season victory total in a non-strike season in history. The American League continued its domination at the All-Star Game by winning its fourth straight game; the A.L. has won nine of the last ten contests. This season, the Atlanta Braves failed to qualify for the postseason for the first time since 1990. Individual achievements included Barry Bonds who, despite questions surrounding his alleged steroid use and involvement in the BALCO scandal, surpassed Babe Ruth for second place on the career home runs list.
In 2008, Ayala pitched in 62 games for the Nationals, going 1–8 with a 5.77 ERA.
On August 17, 2008, Ayala was traded to the New York Mets for a player to be named later. Ayala had requested the trade weeks earlier because he wanted a change of scenery, due to personal problems.The Mets sent Anderson Hernández to the Nats to complete the deal. On August 22, 2008, Ayala recorded his first save as a Met in a 3-0 victory over the Houston Astros.
The 2008 Major League Baseball season began on March 25, 2008, in Tokyo, Japan with the 2007 World Series champion Boston Red Sox defeating the Oakland Athletics at the Tokyo Dome 6–5 in the first game of a two-game series, and ended on September 30 with the host Chicago White Sox defeating the Minnesota Twins in a one-game playoff to win the AL Central division. The Civil Rights Game, an exhibition, in Memphis, Tennessee, took place March 29 when the New York Mets beat the Chicago White Sox, 3–2.
Anderson Hernández Mejia is a Dominican professional baseball infielder who is a free agent. He has played in Major League Baseball for the New York Mets, Washington Nationals, Cleveland Indians, and Houston Astros as well as for the Chunichi Dragons of Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB).
The Houston Astros are an American professional baseball team based in Houston, Texas. The Astros compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the American League (AL) West division, having moved to the division in 2013 after spending their first 51 seasons in the National League (NL). The Astros have played their home games at Minute Maid Park since 2000.
In 19 games for the Mets, Ayala had a 5.50 ERA.
On February 18, 2009, Ayala signed a one-year deal with the Minnesota Twins.On June 22, Ayala was designated for assignment, and was released on July 2. According to Twins manager Ron Gardenhire, Ayala was released because he was unhappy with his role on the team. Gardenhire said of Ayala: "When you walk into my office and tell me you don't like your role, and he talked about his contract for next year, you lose me right there. I don't deal with that. We're talking about winning now. That's why he's out the door and another guy's in there to pitch. And it's not because he's a bad guy. His theories are a little different."
On July 3, 2009, he signed a minor league deal with the Florida Marlins. He was added to the major league roster on July 12. Ayala was designated for assignment on August 31. In 10 appearances, Ayala went 0–3 with an 11.74 ERA. After being DFA, Ayala said of the Marlins: "It was terrible what they did. I don't know why they called me up if they were going to do this. I think it's a lack of respect. I know it's a business, but for me, it's something they've handled poorly."
Ayala signed a minor league contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers on December 16, 2009. He was assigned to the Triple-A Albuquerque Isotopes to start the season. He pitched in 14 games for the Isotopes, mostly as a closer. He was 1–3 with a 4.50 ERA and four saves. He was released by the Dodgers on May 17 after he exercised an opt-out clause in his contract.[ citation needed ]
On May 20, 2010, Ayala signed a minor league contract with the Arizona Diamondbacks. On July 16, 2010, Ayala was released by the Diamondbacks organization.
On August 27, 2010, Ayala signed a minor league contract with the Colorado Rockies. On November 22, 2010, Ayala became a minor league free agent.[ citation needed ]
On February 9, 2011, Ayala signed a minor league contract with the New York Yankees.On March 30 it was announced that Ayala had been added to the opening day roster.
On February 10, 2012, he signed a one-year major league deal with the Baltimore Orioles.
On October 29, the Orioles announced they intended to exercise their club option on Ayala worth $1 million. Ayala would've earned $1 million from the buyout had the Orioles not exercised the option.[ citation needed ]
On April 10, 2013, Ayala was traded to the Atlanta Braves for minor league prospect Chris Jones.
On February 7, 2014, Ayala signed a minor league deal with the Washington Nationals.
The Nationals granted him his release on March 19, and he re-signed with the Orioles on March 20.
He later exercised an opt out in his contract with the Orioles and signed a minor-league contract with the Toronto Blue Jays on June 6, 2014.He was activated by the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons on June 8, and released on July 4.
On July 19, 2014, Ayala signed with the Olmecas de Tabasco of the Mexican Baseball League.
On June 30, 2016, Ayala signed with the Diablos Rojos del Mexico of the Mexican Baseball League. He elected free agency on April 17, 2017.
On June 4, 2017, Ayala signed with the Saraperos de Saltillo of the Mexican Baseball League. He was released on January 18, 2018.
On March 22, 2018, Ayala signed with the Bravos de León of the Mexican Baseball League. He was released on April 20, 2018.
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