Recker with the New York Mets in 2015
|Catcher / First baseman|
|Born: August 29, 1983|
|August 25, 2011, for the Oakland Athletics|
|Last MLB appearance|
|April 19, 2017, for the Atlanta Braves|
|MLB statistics |
(through 2017 season)
|Runs batted in||70|
Anthony Vito Recker (born August 29, 1983) is an American former professional baseball catcher and first baseman. He previously played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Oakland Athletics, Chicago Cubs, New York Mets, and Atlanta Braves.
Born in Allentown, Pennsylvania, Recker was raised by mother Alicia and stepfather Kip. He attended Catasauqua High School, where he also played football and basketball, and later continued his baseball career at Alvernia College, a small NCAA Division III school in Reading, Pennsylvania. One of Recker's college teammates was Zach Lutz, and the pair were coached by Lutz's father. While playing for the Crusaders, Recker spent some time on the mound, where he occasionally threw a knuckleball. Despite growing up in Pennsylvania, Recker's favorite team was the Oakland Athletics.
On August 23, 2011, he was promoted to the major leagues for the first time. He was named to the Triple-A All-PCL Team in 2011, a season in which he powered 16 home runs for the Sacramento River Cats. He made the Athletics' 2012 Opening Day roster, but was optioned to the minor leagues in May.
New York Mets
Recker made the Mets' 2013 Opening Day roster as a backup catcher. Although Recker is a position player, he pitched the ninth inning for the New York Mets to preserve their regular pitchers in a lopsided game on June 30, 2013, where the Mets were defeated by the Washington Nationals by a score of 13-2. The last position player to pitch for the Mets before Recker did so was catcher Rob Johnson on May 18, 2012. He was optioned to the Triple-A Las Vegas 51s on August 19. He was recalled on August 28, as a back up to Travis d'Arnaud, due to the trade that sent catcher John Buck and outfielder Marlon Byrd to the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Recker made the Opening Day roster in 2014 as a backup catcher to d'Arnaud. On April 12, Recker hit a solo home run in the top of the 13th off Matt Shoemaker to break the 6-6 tie between the Mets and Angels and win the game for the Mets 7-6.
Despite an early-season injury to d'Arnaud in 2015, the Mets kept Recker as a backup catcher, and promoted prospect Kevin Plawecki to serve as the starter. On April 14th, Recker played 3B in an emergency role. On May 14, Recker had his first career multi-homer game against the Chicago Cubs, a game that the Mets went on to lose. On November 6, Recker was outrighted off the 40-man roster, making him a free agent. Recker hit .125 with two home runs, five RBIs in 80 at-bats in 32 games in 2015. From 2013 to 2015 as a Met, Recker hit 15 home runs in 140 games. However, Recker did manage to hit 8 home runs in just 108 plate appearances while playing for the Las Vegas 51s. Recker was known for his propensity to hit home runs late in games or in key situations.
On November 27, 2015, Recker signed a minor league contract with the Cleveland Indians, including an invitation to spring training. He appeared in 19 games for the AAA Columbus Clippers, early in the 2016 season.
Recker was traded to the Atlanta Braves on May 9, 2016 for cash considerations, and assigned to the Triple-A Gwinnett Braves. The Braves promoted Recker to the major leagues after an injury to Tyler Flowers, that July.
On December 2, 2016, Recker and the Braves avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to an $800,000 contract for the 2017 season. He was initially optioned to Gwinnett at the end of spring training, but eventually was selected as one of the last two players to make the Braves’ 2017 Opening Day roster, alongside Chaz Roe. He had his contract purchased on July 21, 2017. 
On July 24, 2017, the Braves traded Recker, Jaime García, and cash considerations to the Minnesota Twins for prospect Huascar Ynoa. The Twins subsequently outrighted Recker to the minor leagues on July 28, 2017. He appeared in 19 games for the AAA Rochester Red Wings, that year. He elected free agency on October 10, 2017.
On March 5, 2018, Recker signed a minor-league contract with the Arizona Diamondbacks, which included an invitation to spring training. He spent the season in AAA, catching in 66 of the 74 games in which he appeared for the Reno Aces. He elected free agency on November 3, 2018.
Recker married Kelly Shepardson on November 2, 2013. His wife Kelly gave birth to their first child Camden Anthony Recker on December 29, 2014. He recently became an analyst on the Mets' network SNY.
- "Anthony Recker Stats". baseball-reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. 2019. Retrieved March 10, 2019.
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- Joyce, Greg (September 10, 2014). "Catasauqua's Anthony Recker enjoying full season with New York Mets". The Express Times. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
- Vorkunov, Mike (February 25, 2014). "Mets Zach Lutz and Anthony Recker go from Division 3 college teammates to big leagues". NJ.com. Retrieved May 11, 2016.
- Carig, Marc (June 30, 2013). "Catcher Anthony Recker pitches in blowout loss". Newsday. Retrieved May 15, 2016.
- Hutchinson, Dave (June 30, 2013). "Mets catcher Anthony Recker gets chance to pitch in blowout loss". NJ.com. Retrieved May 15, 2016.
- Schuler, Jeff (August 23, 2011). "Catty's Recker getting his major league chance with Oakland". The Morning Call. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
- "A's Select C Anthony Recker from Sacramento". MLB.com. August 23, 2011. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
- Schuler, Jeff (January 3, 2013). "Catasauqua's Anthony Recker ready for fresh start with New York Mets". The Morning Call. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
- "Cubs get Anthony Recker from A's for Blake Lalli". The Morning Call. Associated Press. August 27, 2012. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
- Kruth, Cash (October 24, 2012). "Cubs claim Gutierrez off waivers, designate Recker". MLB.com. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
- "New York Mets claim Catasauqua graduate Anthony Recker off waivers". Express Times. October 25, 2012. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
- Housenick, Mandy (April 13, 2013). "Catty's Recker eager to prove he belongs". The Morning Call. Retrieved May 15, 2016.
- Iseman, Chris (June 30, 2013). "Mets backup catcher Recker pitches in". MLB.com. Retrieved May 15, 2016.
- Erickson, Kelly (August 19, 2013). "Mets keeping d'Arnaud; Recker optioned". MLB.com. Retrieved May 14, 2016.
- DiComo, Anthony (March 30, 2014). "Mets finalize 25-man roster for Opening Day". MLB.com. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
- "Catasauqua grad Anthony Recker to remain in backup role for Mets despite injury to Travis d'Arnaud". The Morning Call. Associated Press. April 21, 2015. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
- "Recker hits 2 HRs, but passed ball sinks Mets". mlb.com. Retrieved May 15, 2015.
- McCarron, Anthony (November 27, 2015). "Ex-Mets catcher Anthony Recker inks minor-league deal with Cleveland Indians". New York Daily News. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
- Kruth, Cash (May 9, 2016). "Braves acquire catcher Recker from Indians". MLB.com. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
- Bowman, Mark. "Braves seeking solution to catching duties". MLB.com. Retrieved July 18, 2016.
- Bowman, Mark (December 2, 2016). "Braves agree to deals with Recker, Rodriguez". MLB.com. Retrieved December 3, 2016.
- Bowman, Mark (April 3, 2017). "Recker pleasantly surprised to make roster". MLB.com. Retrieved April 3, 2017.
- Bowman, Mark (April 2, 2017). "Roe, Recker on Braves' Opening Day roster". MLB.com. Retrieved April 3, 2017.
- Keh, Andrew (February 18, 2013). "There Are Rings in Mets' Future". New York Times. Retrieved May 10, 2016.
- Ivice, Paul (February 11, 2015). "First-time dad and Mets No. 2 catcher Anthony Recker looks for ways to improve". Newsday. Retrieved May 10, 2016.