He went 4 for 7 over two games for the Braves and hoped to stay until regular shortstop Jeff Blauser returned.
"I'm not looking to do anything spectacular," Giovanola told reporters afterward, "but I think I can help the team win."
Giovanola eventually worked to help big league teams win over five seasons. He saw parts of three seasons with the Braves and two more with the Padres. He got into a total of 218 games over his big league career.
Giovanola's career began in 1990, taken by the Braves in the seventh round of the draft out of Santa Clara University. He played his first season between rookie Idaho Falls and single-A Sumter.
He made high-A Durham in 1991 then AA Greenville in 1992. He first saw AAA in 1994, then made Atlanta in 1995.
Giovanola got into 13 games for the Braves in 1995, picking up one hit in 14 at bats. He got into another 43 in 1996, hitting .232.
He spent 14 games in Atlanta in 1997 and the rest at AAA Richmond. He picked up three RBI, two on a triple, in a June game for Richmond.
That spring, Giovanola hoped his batting stance might give him a leg up.
"If (Braves manager Bobby Cox) wants to take a left-handed hitter, it seems I'd be the guy to consider," Giovanola told Morris News Service.
Giovanola moved to the Padres for 1998, taken off waivers. He also had his best season yet in terms of games played. He got into 92 games for San Diego and hit .230.
He then returned for 56 more games in 1999. He got his call back to the majors in May.
"A shock," Giovanola told The Las Vegas Sun of getting called back. "But it's a nice shock. I didn't think I did very well down here. ... I just assumed I'd be here all season."
Giovanola hit .190 in his time that year with the Padres. He even got into a game as a pitcher, going an inning and a third, giving up one hit. That year turned out to be his last as as pro.
- Savannah Morning News, wire service, Aug. 2, 1996: Braves
- Augusta Chronicle, Morris News Service, March 13, 1997: Braves' utility is spelled M-O-R-D-E-C-I
- Las Vegas Sun, May 21, 1999: Stars Spencer hit hard in '99 triple-A debut
Players/Coaches Featured: 2,447
Made the Majors: 996-40.7%-X
Never Made Majors:1,451-59.3%
5+ Seasons in the Majors: 416-X
10+ Seasons in the Minors:252