Ryan Francis Garko (born January 2, 1981 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) is a professional baseball outfielder, first baseman, and designated hitter, who most recently played for the Samsung Lions of the Korean Baseball Organization. In college, he was a catcher. He has played for the Cleveland Indians, the San Francisco Giants, and the Texas Rangers in Major League Baseball. Garko is seen by former ESPN reporter John Sickels as a good hitter who hits to all parts of the field, but with poor defensive instincts. He is not strikeout prone; however, he does not generate a large number of walks.
When he attended Stanford University, Garko won the Johnny Bench Award and was named the Pac-10 Co-Player of the Year his senior year. He was also voted onto the College World Series Legends Team, featuring 28 of the best College World Series players as voted upon by fans, writers, and head coaches. During his time in the Cleveland Indians' organization, Garko was converted into a first baseman. In 2006, Baseball America ranked him as the fifth best prospect in the Indians organization, including being the best at hitting for average.
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... Garko resides in Scottsdale, Arizona, with his spouse Christie ... He is a fan of the Los Angeles Lakers and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish ...