Not sure how many of you saw this, but Oscar Azocar died yesterday of a heart attack. He was 45.
If you grew up watching the New York Yankees in the late 1980s and early 90s, you were used to guys like Azocar—flawed, free-swinging half-prospects whose enthusiasm and energy never quite equaled their talent. Azocar never walked—like, his first in the majors came after 130 at-bats. But the guy had a beautiful swing, coupled with a crazy stance. His bat was constantly twirling and shaking in the air, sort of like Bam Bam’s club. He hit .350 with four home runs in his first 20 games, and fans got sort of excited. But then the pitching caught up (as it often does), and he faded away. First to the Pardes. Then to the Mexican League.
I have no emotional connection to the man, but it’s undeniably sad. He was 45-years old.