Former Atlanta Braves second baseman Marcus Giles once showed promise as one of the game’s best young players.
He formed a strong core with fellows Braves Andruw Jones and Chipper Jones, seeming to be a franchise corner piece for many years.
— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) August 6, 2017
However, his career was suddenly derailed.
A hospitalization and subsequent decline in production led to Giles being forced out of the game.
Here is a look at what happened to the second baseman’s career.
An Underdog Story
Giles was drafted by the Braves in the 53rd round of the 1996 MLB Draft, making him one of the final selections.
He entered the Minors and quickly made his presence known despite his low pick.
In his first season, Giles hit .348 with eight home runs at the Rookie Ball level.
He then followed this up with an even better season in A-Ball the next year, hitting .329 but slugging an astounding 37 homers.
The power production from the 5-foot-8 second baseman was unique for the position, raising his perceived value in the organization.
In the next season, he added another standout season to earn him a #74 ranking within the top 100 at just 21 years old.
After a couple more years in the Minors, Giles finally got his chance in MLB.
— Random MLB Stars (@RandomMLBStars) May 6, 2021
He was called up in 2001 to make his debut, and began hitting relatively well.
As a rookie, he hit .262 with nine homers and 31 RBI.
However, this wasn’t good enough to give him a solid spot on the roster, as he began bouncing between the Majors and Minors.
It wouldn’t be until 2003 that his consistent playing time would come, and Giles would begin to stand out on the big stage.
Giles Becomes All-Star
In 2003, Giles took the next step in his career.
He appeared in 145 games, posting numbers that were among the league’s best.
— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) September 27, 2016
It started with a .316 average and a .390 on-base, making him one of the most well-rounded hitters in the game.
He also tallied 21 home runs, 69 RBI, and 14 stolen bases to add to his All-Star campaign.
This culminated to Giles receiving an 18th place finish in the NL MVP voting, bookmarking his breakout season.
He appeared to be on pace to repeat his production in 2004, but he suffered a freak injury.
When drifting back on a shallow pop-up in the outfield, he ran into Andruw Jones.
This left Giles with a broken collarbone and a concussion, causing him to miss over two months of the season.
Despite this, he finished batting at a .311 mark with eight home runs and 17 stolen bases.
While it was far from his production in the year prior, they were still strong numbers for the second baseman.
He again posted a strong season in 2005, but it was 2006 that would change his career forever.
Giles Feels A Pain
In 2006, Giles made it through most of the season with below-average numbers for his career.
However, he was hospitalized on Sept. 2 when he experienced sudden pains in his chest and abdomen.
Though he feared it may have been a heart valve issue, doctors determined that he had the not-as-serious acid reflux.
In the following offseason, the Braves decided to not re-sign the second baseman due to a lack of production, sending him into the free agency market for the first time in his career.
Name a random MLB player you were a fan of. I’ll start.
Marcus Giles pic.twitter.com/sbm2xJWHxi
— Brent Barnett (@25Barnett) May 3, 2020
The San Diego Padres signed Giles, but his production was far from the same.
Here, he did get to play with his brother Brian Giles, an outfielder that put together a standout career of his own.
However, Marcus’ struggles were too much, resulting in the team cutting him following the season.
Giles was not able to rebound from this, as no teams opted to take a chance on him as he entered his 30s.
In the following years, he signed a few different Minor League deals with teams but nothing ever came of it.
Finally, in 2009 he gave up on reaching the big leagues and retired.
In his seven seasons, Giles finished with a .277 average, 76 home runs, and 813 hits.
After retiring from baseball, Giles has tried to remain away from the spotlight.
He has made the occasional appearance at Braves games throughout the years though.
— Mark Bowman (@mlbbowman) August 8, 2015
Besides that, there isn’t much information on what he has been doing in his time, but his name was in the news for the wrong reasons.
Late in 2009, Giles was arrested on a misdemeanor battery charge involving his wife.
This was a major blemish on his character, and likely a big reason that he has stayed away since.
Despite his off-field actions, Giles will give Braves fans memories of his strong production in a short period of time with the organization.
He was an underdog story from the beginning, working his way into top prospect status before finally breaking into the Majors.
However, his rapid decline led to him becoming just another forgotten player of the early-2000s.