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Beyond The U: Bryan Garcia

Bryan was one of the best relievers for UM in recent history.

NCAA Baseball: College World Series-Florida vs Miami
Here Bryan Pitches against the Florida Gators in the 2015 CWS.
Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

Bryan Garcia was a key player in his time at Miami. Garcia represented another great reliever in Miami’s long lineage of strong pitchers, and he looks to become a dominant closer at the next level. Bryan was drafted in the 6th Round of the 2016 MLB Draft by the Detroit Tigers, and he looks to continue to improve and perform.

High School: Bryan played at Christopher Columbus high school in Miami, Florida. Garcia was a dominant pitcher in his final high school season, earning First-Team All-Dade County honors from the Miami Herald. Garcia posted an 8-1 record and 1.23 ERA in his final season in high school, and was named his team’s MVP in his senior season.

Freshman Year: In his freshman year Garcia emerged as the Canes’ closer, posting a 1.75 ERA and 15 saves. He set a UM freshman record for saves, (which Frankie Bartow will try and break this season) and his 15 saves tied for second most in the ACC. His stellar performances as a freshman on a consistent basis earned him All-ACC Second-Team honors, NCBWA Third-Team All-American honors, and Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American honors. After his first season it appeared as if Miami had their closer of the future.

Sophomore Year: In his second season Bryan regressed a little bit, but still gave the Hurricanes a spectacular option to close out ball-games. Garcia posted a 2.50 ERA and 10 saves in his Sophomore season, and was named to the All-ACC Third-Team. In this year Bryan served as a reliable and dominant closer for the Hurricanes, and more of the same was expected in his junior year.

Junior Year: Bryan’s junior season was nothing short of spectacular. He posted a 1.89 ERA and 18 saves, and was named the NCBWA 2016 Stopper of the Year, which is awarded annually to the nation’s best relief pitcher. Bryan also passed a significant UM milestone in his junior season, becoming the all-time saves leader in the history of Miami Hurricanes baseball. In addition to winning the Stopper of the Year award from the NCBWA he was also named to the 2016 All-ACC Third-Team (personally don’t know how he wasn’t on the first-team), a 2016 Perfect Game All-America Honorable Mention, and was named to the 2016 NCBWA All-American First-Team. YES, HE WAS NAMED TO AN ALL-AMERICAN FIRST-TEAM, AND CONSIDERED THE BEST RELIEVER IN THE NATION, BUT HE WAS A THIRD-TEAM ALL-ACC SELECTION... ugh the ACC sometimes...

Professional Career and Future Hopes: Bryan was selected by the Detroit Tigers in the 6th Round of the 2016 MLB Draft. Bryan was sent to the Class-A Short-Season Affiliate of the Tigers’, the Connecticut Tigers. In Connecticut he posted a tremendous 1.00 ERA and 6 saves in just 12 games finished, (important stat for closer prospects), and he was quickly promoted to the Class-A West Michigan Whitecaps, where he made only one appearance, giving up 3 earned runs. Bryan figures to be a key prospect for the Tigers’ bullpen, and don’t be surprised to see him start in Class-A this season, and attempt to make the move up to Class-A Advanced and possibly Double-A ball if he continues to develop as well as he can. Bryan has very bright prospects for the future, and hopefully he fulfills his potential.

Conclusion: Bryan Garcia was possibly the best closer in the history of Miami Hurricanes baseball. He was often completely dominant, and he represents one of the biggest holes Jim Morris was asked to fill coming into this season, which it appears has been solved with the emergence of Frankie Bartow. Bryan has very bright hopes for the future, and should emerge as one of the Tigers’ main closer or set-up man prospects for the future. Hopefully Bryan continues to show and fulfill his talent in the minors, and we see a call-up for him in the coming years.

Wishing Bryan all the best!