On Friday, Feb. 7, 2020, former outfielder, Angel Echevarria died at the age of 48. Echevarria had been ill with a stomach virus for several days. Friday, the former Scarlet Knights outfielder and Major League Baseball veteran, fell and hit his head in his home in Bridgeport, Connecticut. His girlfriend, Jazmine Cox, reports that he called her after his fall. Unfortunately, Echevarria did not recover from his injuries.
He was born on May 25, 1971, in Bridgeport, Connecticut.
After starring at Bassick High School, he became Rutgers University’s (New Jersey), all-time leader in home runs and RBI’s. In 1990, he helped RU to an Atlantic 10 East Division and tournament title, closing that season with just one win short of the College World Series.
In 1991, he destroyed the old records and set new single-season records with twelve home runs, 80 hits, and 132 total bases. This helped power Rutgers to the Central Regional, nonetheless, Ru fell short once again in the College World series.
Echevarria was drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the seventeenth round of the 1992 MLB June Amateur draft from Rutgers.
He made his debut in the MBL on July 15, 1996. He played for the Milwaukee Brewers and the Chicago Cubs. Later, he played two seasons in Japan.
He is well known in his hometown for all of his helpfulness in the community. He operated Simply Baseball out of The Factory in Norwalk, a school he created to coach the next generation of talent, helping them reach their dreams. Echevarria and his fellow coaches from the school often held free clinics for underprivileged youth in the Bridgeport area. He also did fundraising to help Puerto Rico hurricane relief.
In a statement, Cox said, “He was loved by so many. It’s overwhelming the number of people who have reached out. It’s a testament to who he was. He lived, he shared, everyone learned from him. And not just baseball. That is where he shined. He used to tell me, ‘When I have a kid in the batting cages, I don’t want to teach them how to be a pro player, but how to be a great young man or young woman.’”
Echevarria was a great role model for many people and shall be missed by his girlfriend, the Rutger family, and his many fans.
By Sheena Robertson
On The Banks: Rutgers family grieves the loss of Angel Echevarria
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Image Courtesy of Sterling G’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License