Sunday, June 27, 2010

Retro Mariner Sunday 6/27/10

We look again at a former Mariners player. Today's guy didn't spend a lot of time with the team, but was a big part of the first playoff team and was traded for one our best past pitchers. Today, we look at former outfielder Darren Bragg. Darren grew up and went to high school at Taft HS in Watertown, CT. After graduation, he would attend Georgia Tech and play as a member of the Yellow Jackets baseball team. In his senior year of the 1991 season, he would be teammates with future Mariner prospect and Red Sox captain Jason Varitek who was a freshman. Darren would be drafted by the Mariners in the 22nd round of the 1991 draft.

Darren would spend 1991 and 1992 with the Peninsula Pilots in high A ball. He would move up to the AA Jacksonville Suns in 1993. The 1994 season would see Darren start the season with Mariners. He would get his first start April 12, 1994 as the DH against the Minnesota Twins. He would go 1 for 4 in the game. Unfortunately at the end of April, Darren would spend the rest of the year with the Tacoma Rainiers. Starting in 1995, Darren would spend the first half of the season with the Mariners. At the all-star break, he would spend the next month and a half back in Tacoma. Darren would come back up in September, in time for the playoff push. He would be on the roster for all of the 1996 season, until he would be traded to the Boston Red Sox for Jamie Moyer. Darren would become the regular center fielder for the Sox in 1996 and 1997. He would play on a consistent basis in right and center field in 1998.

After the end of the 1998 season, the Red Sox let Darren go, and he would sign and spend 1999 with the St. Louis Cardinals. Darren would again move in 2000, this time to the Colorado Rockies. He would see his time end with the Rockies in late July. In early 2001, Darren would sign with the New York Mets. He would start the season with the Norfolk Tides and come to the Mets in early May. The Mets released Darren on June 12th, and he would stay in the city, signing on with the Yankees. He would only spend two weeks with the big club, spending the rest of the season with the AAA Columbus Clippers. Darren would re-sign with the Mets before the 2002 season, but would be released before the beginning of the season. He would sign with the Atlanta Braves the same day.

Darren would start the season with the Richmond Braves. In the end of April, he would make it back to the majors, staying on with the Braves through the 2003 season. 2004 would see Darren sign again with the Yankees, playing again with the Clippers. After being released by the Yankees organization on July 2nd, Darren would sign on with the San Diego Padres for two weeks. It would take about two weeks for Darren to find a new team in the Cincinnati Reds. After a week and a half with the AAA Louisville Bats, Darren would return, this time with the Reds. Darren would spend his last season as a player with the Nashua Pride of the Atlantic League in 2005.

Upon retiring, in 2006 Darren would team up with former MLB pitcher and teammate from the Nashua Pride Brian Looney. Together, they would start The Hit Club in Thomaston, CT. It is a baseball training facility for young players. In the 2007 and 2008 seasons, Darren would also spend his time as the hitting coach for the single A Dayton Dragons of the Cincinnati Reds organization. Since 2009, Darren has devoted his full time to being an instructor at the Hit Club.

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