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Team Italy slugger Robel Garcia

Team Italy slugger Robel Garcia claimed by Cincinnati Reds

According to Mark Sheldon of MLB.com, Team Italy slugger Robel Garcia was claimed off waivers by the Cincinnati Reds. The 27-year-old infielder was designated for assignment by the Chicago Cubs last week after a series of roster changes prior to 2020 Opening Day. The Cincinnati Reds have optioned Robel Garcia and assigned him to the club's alternate training site at Prasco Park in Mason, Ohio. He will now compete for a spot on the Big League roster since second baseman Mike Moustakis has been placed on the injured-reserve list.

After playing in 98 minor league games in the Cubs organization last season and belting 27 home runs with a .284 batting average, Robel Garcia made his MLB debut for the Chicago Cubs and appeared in 31 contests with 80 plate appearances before being sent down to Triple-A Iowa. While in the Big Leagues, he played primarily second baseman but also saw action in both corner outfield positions during his rookie campaign.

With the switch-hitting Robel Garcia joining fellow Team Italy slugger "Grande Leo" Seminati in the Cincinnati Reds organization, the Azzurri faithful pray that the two players will one day be on the same MLB lineup card. Former Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon penciled Team Italy players Robel Garcia, Anthony Rizzo, and Daniel Descalso in the Cubbies' lineup on several occasions in 2019. Forza #Italia!

by Roberto Angotti