Joey Meneses was the hero for Mexico in the 11-5 victory over the United States in the World Baseball Classic. El CabaJoey hit two home runs and drove in 5 runs to charge the Mexican offense, but where did this new slugger come from in the Mexican offense?
Joey Meneses was born in Culiacán, Mexico, in 1992. In 2011 he signed a minor league contract with the Atlanta Braves with 19 years of age, although he was never able to establish himself in the Majors.
The Mexican did not give up and was in the Minor Leagues for 8 years and in 2019 he even played with the Orix Buffalos of the Japan Baseball League. During all those years he wore the uniform of the Tomateros de Culiacán in the Mexican Winter League.
In 2021, he returned to the Minor Leagues with the Boston Red Sox and in 2022 he is taken over by the Washington Nationals. With Washington they decided to raise it to the Major Leagues in the last two months of the championship when the team no longer had a chance of advancing to the postseason.
But since he came to the MLB, Meneses, at 31, has shown that he still has a lot to give. On August 2, 2022, he became the first Mexican batter to hit a home run in his first MLB at-bat. He did it against the New York Mets and surpassed the mark of Gabe Álvarez, who on June 23, 1998 with the Detroit Tigers did it in his second game and fifth at-bat.
But that was not the only mark that Meneses established in the Majors, he also set the record for being the oldest position player to debut in the Major Leagues, surpassing José Tolentino when he debuted as a pinch hitter on July 28, 1991 at the age of 30.
The Mexican finished the season with a .324 batting average, 72 hits, 13 home runs and 34 RBIs in just 56 games. The Mexican earned a place in the starting lineup of the Washington Nationals after more than 10 years between the Minor Leagues and Caribbean Baseball.
“Everything that is happening is very exciting. Sometimes I don’t know if I’m awake or dreaming. I had always dreamed of reaching the Major Leagues and now I am happy and excited to be here”, were the words of Joey Meneses in September 2022 about his arrival in the MLB.
Joey Meneses with two homers commands Mexico’s victory against the United States to get the first of the World Classic
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