Eric Young Jr.

Eric Orlando Young Jr. (born May 25, 1985) is an American professional baseball coach and former outfielder who is the first base coach for the for the Washington Nationals of Major League Baseball (MLB). He played in MLB for the Colorado Rockies, New York Mets, Atlanta Braves, New York Yankees, and Los Angeles Angels. He was the National League stolen base leader in 2013.

Eric Young Jr.
Young with the New York Mets in 2013
Washington Nationals – No. 12
Outfielder / First base coach
Born: (1985-05-25) May 25, 1985
New Brunswick, New Jersey, U.S.
Batted: Switch
Threw: Right
MLB debut
August 25, 2009, for the Colorado Rockies
Last MLB appearance
September 30, 2018, for the Los Angeles Angels
MLB statistics
Batting average.245
Home runs13
Runs batted in112
Stolen bases162

As coach

Career highlights and awards
  • NL stolen base leader (2013)

Baseball career

Young was born in New Brunswick, New Jersey and graduated from Piscataway Township High School in Piscataway, New Jersey.[1] He had a football scholarship to attend Villanova University. The Colorado Rockies selected Young in the 30th round of the 2003 Major League Baseball draft, and he signed rather than attend college.[2]

Young began his career playing in 2004 for the Casper Rockies (now the Grand Junction Rockies), that was an advanced rookie team located in Casper, Wyoming and was part of the Pioneer League. In 2006, Young led all minor leaguers in stolen bases with 87.[3] He then won the Arizona Fall League batting title, finishing with a .430 average.[4] Young appeared in the 2009 Futures Game, hitting a three-run home run. The world team won 7 to 5.[5]

Colorado Rockies

Young made his major league debut on August 25, 2009, for the Colorado Rockies playing center field. He had his first career hit in this game during the 5th inning and ended the game 1–4. Eric Young Sr. was in attendance for his son's debut. On September 8, 2009, Young Jr. hit his first career home run in the bottom of the 6th inning against the Cincinnati Reds.

During spring training for the 2010 season, Young was optioned to the team's Triple-A affiliate, the Colorado Springs Sky Sox.[6] On April 25, 2010, Young was recalled to the Rockies from Colorado Springs. On May 15, 2010, he suffered a stress fracture and was placed on the DL. He would return from the DL to Coors Field on August 14, 2010. On May 27, 2011, he was called back up to the Rockies with an above .300 batting average with the Sky Sox.

New York Mets

Young was designated for assignment on June 12, 2013, and traded to the New York Mets on June 18, 2013, in exchange for Collin McHugh.[7] On July 24, 2013, Young was involved in a season-ending accident with Tim Hudson. Hudson was covering the first base bag, and Young attempted to beat the groundout. When Young stepped late on the bag, his cleat dug hard into Hudson's ankle full stride, unnaturally rolling it. This incident broke Hudson's ankle and ultimately ended Hudson's last season with the Braves. Young expressed extreme concern for Hudson after the play ended.[8]

On August 2, 2013, Young hit the first walk-off hit of his career, a two-run home run, in the 11th inning against the Kansas City Royals. On September 29, 2013, in the final game of the season, Young stole his 45th and 46th bases against the Milwaukee Brewers, becoming the National League stolen base leader. He is the Mets' first stolen bases champion since José Reyes in 2007. On December 2, 2014, Young was non-tendered by the Mets.

Atlanta Braves

Young signed a minor league contract with the Atlanta Braves on February 13, 2015. The deal included an invitation to spring training.[9][10] On June 5, 2015, the Braves designated Young for assignment.[11] With Atlanta, he batted .169/.229/.273.

Second stint with the Mets

On August 22, 2015, Young was traded back to the Mets in exchange for cash considerations.[12] He was removed from the 40-man roster on November 5, 2015, making him a free agent.[13] Young had a batting average of .153 with no home runs, five RBIs and .217 on-base percentage with both the Braves and the Mets in 2015.

Milwaukee Brewers

On January 5, 2016, Young signed a minor league contract with the Brewers, with an invitation to spring training.[14] He was one of nine players competing to be the Brewers center fielder for the 2016 season.[15] Center field was one of the last positions the Brewers decided,[16][17] but Young did not make the Opening Day roster.[18]

New York Yankees

On August 31, 2016, the Brewers traded Young to the New York Yankees for cash considerations. The Yankees assigned him to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders.[19]

Los Angeles Angels

On January 24, 2017, the Angels signed Young Jr. to a minor league deal, later calling him up to replace the injured Mike Trout. On May 31, Young hit a game-winning solo home run in the eighth inning to give the Angels a 2–1 lead against the Atlanta Braves. This was his first home run since 2014. The Angels went on to win by that score.[20] He was outrighted on July 13. He was called back up during the end of the season. In 110 at bats, Young tied a career high by hitting 4 home runs; he was outrighted and elected free agency after the season.

On January 4, 2018, the Angels re-signed Young to a minor league deal. He was assigned to AAA Salt Lake Bees for the 2018 season. He was recalled on July 27.[21] In 109 at bats, he batted .202/.248/.303.

Baltimore Orioles

On February 9, 2019, the Orioles signed Young Jr. to a minor league contract that included an invitation to spring training. He was released on March 22, 2019.[22]

Seattle Mariners

On March 26, 2019, Young Jr. signed a minor league deal with the Seattle Mariners. He was released on July 23, 2019.

Acereros de Monclova

On July 28, 2019, Young Jr. signed with the Acereros de Monclova of the Mexican League.[23] He was released on January 24, 2020.

Guerreros de Oaxaca

On February 12, 2020, Young Jr. signed with the Guerreros de Oaxaca of the Mexican League. Young Jr. did not play in a game in 2020 due to the cancellation of the Mexican League season because of the COVID-19 pandemic.[24] On November 18, 2020, Young Jr. was released by the Guerreros.

Coaching career

On January 27, 2021, Young Jr. was announced to be part of the coaching staff of the Tacoma Rainiers, Triple-A affiliate of the Seattle Mariners.[25] The Rainiers announced October 28, 2021, that Young would become first base coach for the Washington Nationals of Major League Baseball.[26]

Personal life

Young is the son of former professional baseball player Eric Young Sr. and the paternal half-brother of actor Dallas Dupree Young.

Young and his wife, Victoria[27][28][29]

See also

  • List of second-generation Major League Baseball players
  • List of Major League Baseball annual stolen base leaders


  1. Miller, Randy. "Angels' Eric Young Jr., shares sad story of losing his 'angel'", NJ Advance Media for, June 9, 2017. Accessed July 5, 2017. "Shortly after joining the club in an Aug. 31, trade, the Yankees were in Baltimore for a Labor Day weekend series when the New Brunswick native and Piscataway High alum learned he was going to be a first-time father."
  2. "Eric Young Jr. returns to where his baseball career began in his Mets' home debut".
  3. Winston, Lisa (July 10, 2009). "Young Jr. ready for Futures Game". Retrieved February 15, 2015.
  4. Torenli, John (November 20, 2008). "Young captures AFL batting title". Retrieved February 15, 2015.
  5. Nightengale, Bob (July 13, 2009). "World a winner on soggy night in Futures game". USA Today. Archived from the original on February 15, 2015. Retrieved February 15, 2015.
  6. "Baseball News".
  7. DiComo, Anthony (June 18, 2013). "Mets acquire Young from Rockies for McHugh". Retrieved February 15, 2015.
  8. "Braves' Hudson breaks ankle in win against Mets". Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  9. "Eric Young Jr, Braves reach minor league deal". Associated Press. February 13, 2015. Retrieved February 15, 2015.
  10. Bowman, Mark (February 13, 2015). "Braves ink speedy Young to Minor League deal". Retrieved February 15, 2015.
  11. "Braves Replace Eric Young Jr". The New York Times. 6 June 2015. Retrieved 8 June 2015.
  12. Bowman, Mark (August 22, 2015). "Braves trade Young to Mets for cash". Retrieved August 23, 2015.
  13. "Outfielder Eric Young Jr. becomes free agent - Mets Blog".
  14. "Brewers sign Eric Young Jr. to minor-league deal, invite to camp". January 5, 2016. Retrieved January 10, 2016.
  15. McCalvy, Adam (February 24, 2016). "Nine Brewers to compete for center-field job". Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  16. McCalvy, Adam (March 24, 2016). "Brewers looking at 7 spots to finalize roster". Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  17. McCalvy, Adam (April 3, 2016). "Counsell talks CF, Opening Day in Q&A". Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  18. McCalvy, Adam (April 3, 2016). "7 Brewers make Opening Day roster for first time". Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  19. "Twitter".
  20. Moura, Pedro (May 31, 2017). "Eric Young Jr. has big blast for Angels". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved May 31, 2017.
  21. "Eric Young Jr. back with Angels".
  22. Adams, Steve (March 22, 2019). "Orioles Release Eric Young Jr". Retrieved March 22, 2019.
  23. "Eric Young Jr. aportará experiencia a Acereros". (in Spanish). Retrieved July 28, 2019.
  24. "Mexican League Cancels 2020 Season".
  25. "Mariners announce player development and minor league coaching staffs".
  26. "Congratulations to former Rainiers pitching coach Rob Marcello (Director of Pitching Development, @Padres) and coach Eric Young, Jr. (First Base Coach, @Nationals) on their promotions". Tacoma Rainier. October 28, 2021. Retrieved October 28, 2021.
  27. McCalvy, Adam (March 22, 2016). "Young Jr. has dad to keep him grounded". Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  28. Renck, Troy E. (February 27, 2013). "Eric Young gives Rockies options on offense and defense". Denver Post. Retrieved July 1, 2016.
  29. Pedro Moura (3 March 2017). "Eric Young Jr. opens up to Angels teammates about his grief after loss of first child". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
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