Giuseppe Chiaramonte

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Giuseppe Carlo Chiaramonte

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Biographical Information[edit]

Catcher Giuseppe Chiaramonte spent five seasons in the San Francisco Giants chain, from 1997-2001.

Chiaramonte hit .341 with 26 HR, 72 R and 72 RBI for Fresno State in 1997. The junior was 15th in NCAA Division I in slugging (between Eric Valent and Jose Miranda) and tied Adam Kennedy and Harvey Hargrove for 11th in home runs (15 behind Western Athletic Conference leader Lance Berkman). He was the All-WAC catcher. Both the American Baseball Coaches Association and Collegiate Baseball named him the All-American catcher, while Baseball America picked him second team behind Matt LeCroy.

The Giants drafted him in the fifth round of the 1997 Amateur Draft, one pick before Michael Young. He started off in high-A ball for the San Jose Giants and showed good pop but not enough contact at .229/.314/.448 with 12 HR in 223 AB. Returning to San Jose in 1998, he played a more complete games, producing at a .273/.333/.482 clip with 33 doubles, 22 home runs, 87 runs and 87 RBI while fielding .990 and throwing out 31% of those who tried to steal. He tied Mike Byas and Dionys César for 9th in the California League in runs, was 9th in hits (137, between Ramon Moreta and Rod Barajas), tied A.J. Leday for 7th in doubles, was 4th in homers (between Barajas and Jayson Bass), ranked 7th in RBI (between Tim Flaherty and Pete Paciorek), was 4th in total bases (242, between Adam Piatt and Brendan Kingman), led in sacrifice flies (12) and led in catcher fielding percentage. He was named the loop's All-Star catcher. Baseball America rated him as the league's #10 prospect, second among position players behind Nathan Haynes. Among Giants farmhands, he tied Wilson Delgado and Byas for the most runs, was 4th in doubles, tied for third in homers (4 behind leader Armando Rios), was 5th in RBI and second in total bases (7 shy of Benji Simonton).

He played in the 1999 Futures Game at Fenway Park, backing up Ben Petrick for the US and going 0 for 1 as the US was shut out, 7-0. For the Shreveport Captains that year, he hit .245/.319/.448 with 19 homers and 74 RBI, but only threw out 14% of those who tried to steal. He missed the Texas League top 10 in home runs by one. Among Giants minor leaguers, he was 8th in home runs and 10th in RBI.

Making it to AAA with the 2000 Fresno Grizzlies, he put up pretty good offensive numbers (.255/.329/.512, 30 2B, 24 HR, 79 RBI) but only threw out 10% of would-be base-thieves. He missed the 2000 PCL top 10 in home runs by one. He was 6th in the Giants system in doubles, 3rd in home runs (behind only Pedro Feliz and Damon Minor) and 7th in RBI (between Carlos Valderrama and Doug Clark). The 2000 Giants did not call him up, using Bobby Estalella and Doug Mirabelli on the way to 97 wins. Craig Wilson was named the PCL All-Star catcher.

Just a step from the majors, Chiaramonte's performance fell apart in 2001. He hit only .210/.266/.330 in 37 games for Fresno and .205/.265/.250 in 13 games for the Shreveport Swamp Dragons to end his playing career. He coached for Bethany University, Cabrillo College and Scotts Valley High School (2006-2007) but stopped baseball to finish his degree and pursue other career routes to support his family. He was a Santa Cruz Sheriff's Deputy from 2008-2014 then worked for the Clovis Police Department. In 2015, he was named Police Officer of the Year in Clovis.


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