Iván Rodríguez Torres (born November 30, 1971 in Vega Baja, Puerto Rico), nicknamed "Pudge" or "I-Rod", is a professional baseball player. He has a career batting average of .304 and has won eleven Gold Glove awards as a catcher, as well as the American League Most Valuable Player Award in 1999.
When Rodríguez made his major league debut with the Texas Rangers in 1992, he became the youngest person to play catcher in a major league game. He immediately established himself as an excellent hitter who was also proficient in throwing out would-be base-stealers.
Although he had the nickname "Pudge" since his youth, Rodríguez was often compared early on to the veteran catcher Carlton Fisk, who was also called "Pudge." Fisk retired early in Rodríguez's career, and fans and sportswriters viewed it as the passing of the torch from one Pudge to another.
When his contract with Texas ran out following the 2002 season, Rodríguez signed with the Florida Marlins for one year. By then a major-league veteran of over a decade, he helped lead a team of talented youngsters to victory in the World Series. In the off-season, he left Florida to sign with the Detroit Tigers.