Matt Diaz

Matt Diaz

Diaz, with the Braves in 2008
Atlanta Braves — No. 23
Right fielder
Born: March 3, 1978 (1978-03-03) (age 33)
Portland, Oregon
Bats: Right Throws: Right 
MLB debut
July 19, 2003 for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Career statistics
(through 2011 season)
Batting average     .296
Home runs     43
Runs batted in     212

Matthew Edward Diaz (pronounced /ˈdaɪ.əz/ dy-əz; born March 3, 1978 in Portland, Oregon) is a Major League Baseball outfielder who plays for the Atlanta Braves. He grew up in Lakeland, Florida.


Amateur career

As a two-year starter at Florida State University, Diaz helped lead the Seminoles to two College World Series appearances, including the 1999 title game vs. the University of Miami. He was named the Sporting News man of the Year in 1998, and a First Team All-American (American Baseball Coaches Association, National Baseball College Writers' Association) in 1999.

Professional career

Tampa Bay Devil Rays

He was drafted by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in the 1999 Major League Baseball Draft in the 17th round.

Diaz in left field Braves in 2008.

Despite being among the Devil Rays' minor league career leaders in hits and extra base hits, Diaz had a tough time in the majors, hitting only .167 in 30 at-bats in his two years with the Devil Rays. After being released by Tampa Bay, Diaz signed with the Kansas City Royals where he hit .281 with 10 extra base hits (including 1 home run) and 12 RBI in a backup role in 2005.

Atlanta Braves

On December 19, 2005, Diaz was traded to the Atlanta Braves for minor league pitcher Ricardo Rodríguez. Diaz earned a backup outfielder spot for the Braves during spring training. Appearing in 124 games, including many starting assignments in the second half of the season, Diaz batted .327 in 297 at-bats. On August 14, 2006, Diaz had four hits for the second straight day and tied the National League record with ten straight hits. He grounded out in the 9th inning to end the streak.

Diaz had his first career two-homer game on August 29, 2007, against the Florida Marlins. On September 5, he hit a three-run walk-off double in the bottom of the ninth to give the Braves a 9-8 win. Diaz finished the season with a career-high .338 batting average in 124 games.

Pittsburgh Pirates

Matt Diaz hitting against the Houston Astros

In December 2010, Diaz agreed to a two year, $4.25 million contract with the Pittsburgh Pirates.[1]

Atlanta Braves

On August 31st 2011, Diaz was traded back to the Braves for a player to be named later. Pittsburgh also sent cash to the Braves in the deal. [2]


A born-again Christian, Diaz and his wife Leslee have three kids, Nathan Everett, Anna Grace, and Matthew Jacob. His brother is contemporary Christian singer Jonny Diaz.


  • On not being an everyday player: "[A] lot of people would think about the money they're not making if they don't play every day, but we all make enough money."[3]


External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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