- Bats Right, Throws Right
Antonio Horvatic has played for the Croatian national team.
Horvatic was the youngest member of Croatia's squad in the 2014 European Championship but the 17-year-old did well as a regular shortstop for the team, hitting .263/.263/.368 while fielding .941 and scoring four runs in seven games. He also pitched (6 R, 3 ER, 7 H, 3 BB in 4 2/3 IP). Among the regulars, only Slobodan Gales had a better average for Croatia and only Gales scored more runs. He also attended the MLB European Elite Camp that year.
In 2015, Horvatic hit .464/.516/.714 with 13 runs for Karlovac in their nine games in Croatia's short schedule; he also was 1-0 with 14 strikeouts and no runs in 7 innings pitched. In the 2015 European U-18 Championship, he produced at a .444/.500/.778 clip, stole 5 bases in 5 tries and was 2-1 with a 2.70 ERA and 29 K in 23 1/3 IP. He was among the event leaders in both average (6th) and ERA (8th), also placing 5th in slugging, tying for second in steals, leading in innings pitched and strikeouts and tying for first in wins. The rest of Croatia's staff was 0-3. Horvatic was in the MLB European Elite Camp again. In the 2015 B-Level European Championship, he batted .304/.385/.565 with 8 runs in six games for Croatia, stole four bases in four tries, fielded .967 and was 1-0 with a save and no hits or runs in 2 2/3 IP. He got a win in relief over Bulgaria and saved Matko Dabo's 5-4 win over Ukraine and scored four runs against Slovenia as Croatia went unbeaten to win a spot in the 2016 European Championship. He tied Jan Jablonka for the tournament lead in runs, tied for second in doubles (3), tied for first in steals (with Ukraine's Kostiantyn Chukhas), tied Dimitar Nassapov for 4th in total bases (13), tied for 7th in hits (7) and was 10th in slugging. He did not win the tourney MVP, which went to teammate Andrija Tomić, but had a fine two-way tournament clearly.
In October 2015, a Croatian news source said Horvatic was in line to sign with the Tampa Bay Rays in December. No Croatian had ever been signed by a MLB team before.