Alejandro Peláez played baseball at Chula Vista High. As their talented third base, he was named to the All Metro Conference team from 1992 through 1994 and nominated for the all CIF team in 1994.
After graduation, Alex enrolled at Southwestern College where he joined Hall of Fame Coach Jerry Bartow’s baseball team. He played third base and was the designated hitter for the team. He was quickly recognized by the Pacific Coast Conference as being one of the top players in the league. As such, he was selected for the 1995 and 1996 All Pacific Coast Conference Teams. After Southwestern College’s team won the PCCC Championship in 1996, being chosen for the Junior College All-American baseball team further honored him.
San Diego State University recognized his talent and offered him a scholarship to play for them. He did not disappoint them. His skill, hustle and hard work, quickly made him an integral part of their team. The other coaches in the Western Athletic Conference acknowledged his prowess by naming him to the WAC 1997 and 1998 All Conference Teams.
After leaving San Diego State University, Alex was drafted in the 42nd round of the 1998 amateur draft by the San Diego Padres. From 1998 to 2002 he played in their farm system for a number of team: Idaho Falls, ID; Rancho Cucamonga, CA; Mobile, AL; LAS Vegas, NV; and Portland, OR. During that time he was not only selected to three All Star teams in both the Pioneer and Pacific Coast Leagues, but was also named MVP three times. From 2002-2003, Alex earned his place on a major league baseball team by playing for the San Diego Padres.
After his stint in the majors, Alex went on to play for a number of other minor league teams: the Anaheim Angel’s; Salt Lake City, Utah team (2003-2004); the Mexicali, Baja California team (2004); and the Cincinnati Red’s farm team in Louisville, Kentucky (2005).
Alex’s love of baseball did not end when he stopped playing professional baseball. After eleven years in the pros, he rejoined the Cincinnati Red’s organization in 2008 and was assigned to their farm club affiliates in Sarasota, Florida and Billings, Idaho as the hitting coach. Currently, he is the hitting coach for their Dayton, Ohio Dragons in the Pioneer League, preparing baseball players for the major leagues. This year his team led the Midwest league in hitting. When not involved in professional baseball, he is an instructor at the Gonzales Sports Academy in Chula Vista, nationally recognized for its professional seminars and training programs in baseball.
Alex wants to thank his family for supporting him as he pursued his dream of being a baseball player. A special thanks must go to his parents, Manuel and Susana who he says, “Never stopped believing in me and pushed me to be my best.”
Always the consummate teacher, Alex tells us, “My greatest memory of Southwestern College is winning the 1996 Pacific Coast League Championship. I’ll always remember the lesson I learned early in my career from coaches Bartow, Martel,Tirpak and Hinzo. They showed me the way to play the game correctly and, in turn, helped me advance my career, not only as a player but as a teacher.”
Alex Peláez, in appreciation for your many contributions to baseball as an outstanding player and coach, Southwestern College welcomes you into its Athletic Hall of Fame, Class of 2011.