The Red Sox drafted Seton Hall University infielder John Valentin in the fifth round of the 1988 June Amateur Draft and within four years he was in Boston to stay.
He debuted in July 1992 and did most of the heavy lifting at shortstop the next five seasons, emerging as a power threat in 1995 with 27 home runs and led all American League position players with a WAR of 8.3.
He moved to second base and later third base with the arrival of Nomar Garciaparra, but kept hitting, leading the Amerian League with 47 doubles in 1997.
Valentin missed 49 games in 1999 with nagging injuries before he was felled by a knee injury early in the 2000 season, missing all but 10 games.
Plantar fasciatis in his right foot limited him to 20 games in 2001 and the Red Sox did not pursue him when he became a free agent after the season.
In parts of 11 seasons with the Red Sox, Valentin hit .281/.361/.821, an OPS+ of 110, with 124 homers, 558 RBI and 614 runs.
He played in three postseasons with Boston and hit .347/.407/1.046 with five homers and 19 RBI and 15 runs in 17 games. Valentin had 12 RBI in Boston’s five-game win over the Cleveland Indians in the 1999 ALDS.
Valentin caught on as a part-time player with the New York Mets in 2002, but a shoulder injury effectively ended his career.
He coached with the Los Angeles Dodgers from 2013-15 and is currently the minor league fielding coordinator for the Detroit Tigers.