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RIP Julio Cruz

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  • RIP Julio Cruz

    Ozzie Guillen (amongst others) is tweeting that former White Sox 2B Julio Cruz died yesterday following a battle with cancer.

  • #2
    Saw this on Facebook. Was hard to find an article on it. Here's one:
    Riding Shotgun on the Sox Bandwagon since before there was an Internet...


    • #3
      Very sad news. He jump started the Sox in the second half of the 83 season. Had great speed and played excellent defense. That toe injury the next year though basically ended his career.


      • #4
        As Lip said, very sad, only 67 years old.
        I hated to see Tony Bernazard traded at the time but you can't disregard how great the Sox played from late May until the Playoffs. If Cruz was the reason they caught fire will never be known as the Sox did have the horses but his presence sure didn't hurt.
        Now coming up to bat for the White Sox is the Mighty Mite, Nelson Fox.


        • #5
          Click image for larger version

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          Just a great story.
          Now coming up to bat for the White Sox is the Mighty Mite, Nelson Fox.


          • #6
            Have a few more memories and stories about Julio.

            The deal surprised a lot of folks. Bernazard was popular in the clubhouse and a solid player. TLR called him the "heart" of the team.

            After the Sox got him that June they turned I think the most double plays in the league. He stabilized a shaky infield.

            Had a sense of humor. TLR told me one time he saw him eating cheesecake after a game and Tony mentioned he needed to lay off that stuff to watch his weight. Cruz replied, "I need the sugar Skip' it keep me hyper."

            He scored the division clinching run to beat his old team and put the Sox in the playoffs for the first time in 24 years on September 15, 1983. Then on the postgame show joked to Lorn Brown that he "deliberately" (nudge,nudge) got thrown out at third in a key game at Minnesota because had the Sox won and clinched "We wouldn't be able to celebrate with the great Chicago fans. We couldn't celebrate with their fans!"

            It was his line drive one hop single that started the sequence in game #4 of the 83' ALCS that eventually saw Dybzinski over run second and Vance Law get thrown out at the plate.

            Signed a big contract for the next year but suffered a toe injury that basically ended his career. (I don't specifically know what it was. Maybe turf toe?)

            TLR told me he didn't blame Julio or his agent for getting that contract but he felt that Cruz was trying to live up to it and that also hurt him.


            • #7
              Energy was the perfect word for him. As a young kid, he was electric and exciting to complement the types like Harold, Wimpy, the Bull and of course the Commander. A perfect trade for a team that really inspired me to love baseball my entire life. His heart and soul were just what that team needed. I once saw a motivational poster that said energy and persistence will conquer all things, and I think guys like Julio Cruz are perfect examples of that. RIP.
              Btw, the line Kittle had about him and Hoyt made me laugh out loud. Well done sir....

              Edit: I didn't know he was a Spanish broadcaster for the Mariners...what a great tribute the Mariners put out too...