Cody Joseph Ross (born December 23, 1980), nicknamed "Toy Cannon" and "Ross the Boss," is an American professional baseball outfielder for the Oakland Athletics of Major League Baseball (MLB). He is 5 feet 10 inches (1.78 m) tall and weighs 195 pounds (88 kg). Ross has played for the Detroit Tigers (2003), Los Angeles Dodgers (2005–2006), Cincinnati Reds (2006), Florida Marlins (2006–2010), San Francisco Giants (2010–2011), Boston Red Sox (2012), and Arizona Diamondbacks (2013-2014). He is one of the few Major League players to bat right-handed but throw left-handed.
Following high school, Ross embarked on his professional career, getting selected by the Detroit Tigers in the fourth round of the 1999 Major League Baseball Draft. He reached the Major Leagues in 2003, but suffered a torn ACL which caused him to miss most of September. He was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers following spring training in 2004, appearing in a handful of games with them in 2005. In 2006, he played for the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Cincinnati Reds, and the Florida Marlins. It was in Florida that he finally established himself, as he played with the Marlins through 2010. He was used mainly as a reserve outfielder in 2006 and 2007, but during the 2008 season he took over a starting role. He would be a starting outfielder for the rest of his Marlins career, playing centerfield or right field. In 2009, he hit a career-high 24 home runs and won the Marlins' Charlie Hough Good Guy award.
During the 2010 season, the Marlins placed Ross on waivers, and he was claimed by the San Francisco Giants. Named their starting right fielder for the 2010 playoffs, he went on to win the National League Championship Series Most Valuable Player Award, hitting five home runs in the postseason while helping the Giants win the 2010 World Series. He re-signed with San Francisco in 2011, batting .240 during the year. In 2012, he signed a one-year contract with the Boston Red Sox, hitting 22 home runs while playing every day despite the fact that the Red Sox originally expected him to be a reserve player for them. The Arizona Diamondbacks signed him to a three-year contract in December 2012, but a season-ending hip injury limited Ross to 94 games his first year with the team.
By Dean Hanley
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