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Friday, June 11, 2021

Robbi Guzik started as an outfielder, then asked to pitch; Saw six pro seasons, made AA

Robbi Guzik moved from starter to closer in 1993, his fifth season as a pro, and he told The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that July he was warming to the new role.

"The Mets project me as a closer," Guzik told The Post-Gazette. "I'm starting to get myself used to it after starting the last two years. I'm feeling a lot more confidence in myself."

Guzik worked to get used to that role change two seasons after another change, a much more drastic one. Guzik started his pro career with the Mets as an outfielder, then turned pitcher. His pro career lasted six seasons. He topped out at AA.

Guzik's career began in 1989, taken by the Mets the year before in the 30th round of the draft out of Allegheny College in Pennsylvania. Guzik was also credited as Robbie Guzik and Robert Guzik. 

Guzik's brother Brian Guzik also played professionally. Their father, Robert Guzik, served as a scout for the Mets.

With the Mets, Robbi Guzik the outfielder started at rookie Kingsport. He started a rally with a single in a late-June game as he went 2 for 4 with two RBI.

He spoke with The Kingsport Times-News that July about a slow start at the plate.

"It's early. My average doesn't really say anything but I'm working hard and can see improvement in my swing," Guzik told The Times-News. "I need to work on hitting. I just want to get better and better at the game."

Guzik hit .247 overall that year in 52 games. He then moved to short-season Pittsfield for 1990. He hit .192 there in 67 games.

Guzik arrived at single-A Columbia for 1991. He got 43 at bats and hit .116. He then asked for the chance to pitch. He got into 20 games, starting 13. He went 0-4, with a 3.02 ERA.

He returned to Columbia for 1992 and also saw high-A St. Lucie. He went 10-8 between them, with a 3.38 ERA.

Guzik split 1993 between St. Lucie and AA Binghamton. He threw four relief innings in a July game at Binghamton. He also got Manny Ramirez to strike out and ground out, The Binghamton Press and Sun-Bulletin

"We're supposed to sit there and watch the hitters," Guzik told The Press and Sun-Bulletin. "But I just pitch to everyone the same way. My slider was very good and my fastball was moving. Even a couple changeups finally worked."

Guzik went 1-4 on the year, with a 5.07 ERA. He also saved six games. He returned to St. Lucie for 1994. He got into nine games, saved seven and had a 3.38 ERA. That season marked his last as a pro.

1990 Minor League Tally 
Players/Coaches Featured:3,670
Made the Majors:1,254-34.2%
Never Made Majors:2,416-65.8%-X
5+ Seasons in the Majors:522
10+ Seasons in the Minors:308

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