George Kottaras was born on May 16, 1983, in Scarborough, Ontario, Canada. He is currently the top catching prospect in the Boston Red Sox organization and is the starting catcher for the Triple-A Pawtucket Red Sox.
Early Career Edit
Kottaras attended Milliken Mills High School in Markham, Ontario, Canada. Upon graduating in 2002, he attended Conners State College in Warner Oklahoma, where he eventually spent only one year. He was drafted in the 20th round of the 2002 amateur draft by the San Diego Padres. He signed in May 2003 and was assigned to the Idaho Falls Padres of the Pioneer League.
In 2004, Kottaras played for Greece at the 2004 Summer Olympics, which were in Athens. He was the starting first baseman on the team and acted as both the backup catcher and, as one of the few members of the team who could speak Greek, interpreter. He was eligible to play for the team, as both his parents were born in Greece and immigrated to Canada.
On September 5, 2006, Kottaras was traded to the Boston Red Sox to complete the deal for veteran starting pitcher David Wells. He was added to the team's 40-man roster and assigned to the Double-A Portland Sea Dogs, who he helped win the Eastern League championship.
In 2008, he was invited to Spring Training, but failed to make the team and was again assigned to Pawtucket. During that season he platooned with Dusty Brown and ended the season with a .243 batting average, 22 home runs, and 65 RBIs.
In 2009, he was again invited to Spring Training, where he was to compete with Josh Bard and Dusty Brown for the backup catcher's job, behind Jason Varitek. Bard was considered the favorite due to his major league experience, but the Red Sox choose Kottaras due to his lack of remaining options, meaning that he would have to pass through waivers if the Red Sox wanted to return him to Pawtucket, and his higher upside. He will begin to season on the active roster.