Daulton is the son of former big league outfielder Gary Varsho.
Daulton was named after Darren Daulton, his dad's teammate with the Phillies. His middle name is John, after former Phillies bench coach, John Vukovich. (Coincidentally, both Vukovich and Daulton died from brain tumors.)
"There was no doubt about it that he was going to be named Daulton. He was caring. He was loving. He exemplified everything that Philadelphia Phillies baseball was all about. It's about loyalty. It's about love. It's about pulling for one another. It's about giving everything you have that night and preparing to win." –Gary Varsho to the Philadelphia Inquirer in 2017.
Daulton Varsho has countless memories of the game. His favorite occurred in the early 2000s when his father was the bench coach for the Phillies.
“My favorite memory was when I was little, I hit with Jim Thome,” said Varsho. “He’s probably going to be a hall of famer here soon. He took me to the batting cage a lot and would flip me balls. I would hit and he’d help me out. It’s really good memories I’ll always have.”
Varsho has also leaned on his father for advice, recalling one simple, but impactful, statement his father once told him.
“There are ones that are humble and there are ones that are about to be,” Varsho said. “I live by it every day.”
Daulton's sister, Taylor, played basketball at Colorado State and the University of Sioux Falls. And his other sister Andie played softball at Purdue.
In Varsho's senior year at Marshfield High School in Wisconsin, he was First Team All-State after he hit .462 with 31 RBI and 6 home runs for the Tigers. And he stole 17 bases and scored 35 runs.
Daulton's hobbies include hunting, fishing, and hanging out with family and friends.
June 2017: Varsho was the D'Backs second round pick, out of the Univ. of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Daulton signed for $880,000 via scout Rick Sort.
2018 Season: Daulton hit .286/.363/.451, with 11 homers and 19 steals, over 80 games in the California League, where he also threw out 40.3 percent of attempted base-stealers. The numbers reflect Varsho's unique athleticism and well-rounded set of tools, the combination of which could make him the rare dual-threat backstop at the highest level.
In 2018, the Baseball America Prospect Handbook rated Varsho as the 5th-best prospect in the D'Backs' organization. He moved up to #3 in the spring of 2019. But in 2020, Daulton was named the #1 prospect in the D'Backs farm system.
In 2021, Varsho was #2 in the Diamondbacks' system—behind only OF Corbin Carroll.
July 2019: Varsho represented the D-Backs at the Futures All-Star Game.
2019 Season: The Diamondbacks named Varsho the organization’s Minor League Player of the Year. He is the first catcher to win organizational Player of the Year in club history.
Varsho, 23, hit .301 (119-for-396)/.378 OBP/.520 SLG with 25 doubles, 4 triples, 18 home runs, 58 RBI, 42 walks, 21 stolen bases and 85 runs scored in 108 games for the Double-A Southern League Champion Jackson Generals.
He ranked among SL leaders in runs (1st), slugging pct. (1st), OPS (1st, .898) average (3rd), on-base pct. (4th) home runs (T-5th), hits (T-6th), doubles (T-6th) and stolen bases (T-9th). He was named a Southern League All-Star, a Baseball America Minor League All-Star, and participated in the 2019 All-Star Futures Game at Progressive Field in Cleveland.
A native of Chili, Wisconsin, the lefthanded hitting catcher was named MVP of the SL Championship Series after hitting .300 (6-for-20) with 3 RBI and 4 runs scored in 5 games.
2020 Season: Daulton performed well at summer camp in July before earning a big league callup a week into the season. Things didn’t go well initially, but the competitiveness of Varsho’s at-bats improved as the season progressed. He posted an .822 OPS over his final 74 plate appearances.
Varsho doesn’t have much left to prove in the minors, but he also doesn’t have a clear role on the 2021 big league roster. He’ll try to win a spot in spring training and carry over his strong finish from 2020. (Nick Piecoro - BAPH - Spring, 2021)
In parts of three seasons with the Cubs, outfielder Gary Varsho hit three home runs in 99 career games at Wrigley Field. His son, Daulton, made his Wrigley Field debut on July 23, 2021, and in two games at the Friendly Confines, he already has a pair of home runs.
Varsho went 2-for-4 with a home run and three RBI on July 24th. In the first two games against the Cubs, Varsho went 4-for-8 with a double, two homers and six RBI, accounting for all but four of the runs scored by Arizona.
D-backs manager Torey Lovullo worked with Gary Varsho in Cleveland’s player development department, and he knows how proud Gary is of his son. "I know that there was half of his hometown probably in the stands today," Lovullo said, referring to Marshfield, Wis. "That's what makes [his performance] even more impressive. He's been blocking it out the past couple days, had some good at-bats and meaningful moments. So I'm sure his dad and his mom and the rest of his crew today will get a chance to celebrate with him, and they should be very proud of him."
Daulton was unavailable after the game, because he and his family had to hustle out for their evening plans.
"As far as how he's playing, it's great to see," said D-backs starter Merrill Kelly. "I mean, he's a hard-nosed kid, he works real hard. He cares a lot. So I think with the consistent playing time, I think you're going to see more of that." (Gilbert - mlb.com - 7/25/2021)
2021 Season: Over four seasons in the minors, he hit .302 with 187 runs, 46 home runs, 167 RBI and 49 steals over 985 at-bats. Varsho walked 8.7% of the time with a favorable strikeout rate (16.4). His highlight season (.301 with 85 runs, 18 home runs, 58 RBI and 21 steals over 396 at-bats) came at AA in 2019.
The Diamondbacks failed to commit to Varsho over the first half of last year (9-for-62 with eight runs, three RBI and one stolen base). However, his bat played well over the final three months (.275 with 33 runs, 11 home runs, 35 RBI and five stolen bases over 222 at-bats).
He held his own against left-handed pitching (.293 with three home runs and 11 RBI over 82 at-bats). Varsho ranked 49th in launch angle (18.0), but his hard-hit rate (39.9) came in at about the league average. His approach moved above the league average. (S Childs - Feb. 17, 2022)
2022 Season: Varsho had a career year, his first season playing outfield an overwhelming majority of the time.
In 151 games, he posted career highs with 27 home runs, 74 RBIs, 16 stolen bases, a 4.6 fWAR and 19 defensive runs saved (DRS).
Perhaps the most eye-popping of those numbers is his 19 DRS, which tied for first in baseball among outfielders. He did that in spite of ranking 47th in defensive innings out of 51 qualifiers (minimum 900 defensive innings). (J. Leandre - Oct. 10, 2022)
Dec 26, 2022: Blue Jays Player Poised to Break Out in 2023: OF Dalton Varsho
Varsho lands in Toronto already an incredibly valuable player, fresh off a season where he posted a 4.6 FanGraphs WAR and led all MLB outfielders with 18 Outs Above Average. With the Blue Jays, Varsho could take that next step offensively. The 26-year-old hit .235 with 27 home runs and a .745 OPS last season, but hitting at Rogers Centre and in the AL East’s friendly stadiums should help those numbers. Add in another year of development, some seriously improved lineup protection and a potential shift away from catching duties, and there are plenty of arrows pointing up for Varsho the hitter. –Keegan Matheson
- June 2017: Varsho was the D'Backs second round pick, out of the Univ. of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Daulton signed for $880,000 via scout Rick Sort.
- Dec 23, 2022: The Diamondbacks traded C Daulton Varsho to the Blue Jays for SS Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and C Gabriel Moreno.
- Jan 13, 2023: Varsho and the Jays avoided arbitration agreeing to a one-year deal for $3 million.