Wednesday, February 10, 2021

RIP - Pedro Gonzalez

Pedro Gonzalez, a 2nd baseman who played for the Yankees and Indians in the mid-1960s, passed away on January 10, 2021 at age 83. 
Gonzalez was from San Pedro de Macoris in the Dominican Republic, possibly the first in a long line of major league infielders to hail from that small city.
He broke in with the Yankees in 1963, but hardly played for them except his 80 games in 1964. 
In May 1965 he was traded to the Indians. Most of his regular playing time came with Cleveland. He was their starting 2nd baseman from late-May 1965 to late-August 1966, and again in May and June 1967. 
After that, the job was given to Vern Fuller. Gonzalez kicked around in the minors from 1968-71 before playing in Mexico from 1972-74. 
My first year of collecting baseball cards was 1967. Being a Phillies fan, and with Tony Gonzalez' card in the unattainable 7th series, I often used Pedro's card as a stand-in for Tony's when I would play lineup games with my cards back then. 
From Wikipedia: 
San Pedro de Macoris is well known as the birthplace of a large number of professional baseball players. The Dominican capital of Santo Domingo has had 106 MLB players compared to San Pedro's 99, but Santo Domingo's population is more than ten times that of San Pedro. The city is often referred to as "The Cradle of Shortstops." 
Check out Wikipedia for the long list of players from San Pedro de Macoris.  

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