Clevelinks: Former Indians Great Julio Franco Still Loves Baseball

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During the 1980’s the Cleveland Indians had a number of players that grabbed the attention of a hungry fan base in search of a star.  Among them was Julio Franco who in 1982 was acquired by the Cleveland Indians along with Jay Baller, Manny Trillo, George Vukovich, and Jerry Willard from the Philadelphia Phillies in exchange for Von Hayes

The slick fielding shortstop captured the fans admiration playing in 898 games with the Indians from 1983-1988 hitting .295/.344/.394 finishing second in the rookie of the year voting in 1983 and the silver slugger award for second baseman in 1988.

Following the 1988 season the Indians traded him to the Texas Rangers in exchange for Oddibe McDowell, Jerry Browne, and Pete O’Brien.

He returned to the Indians for the 1996 season but was released in mid-August of 1997 despite hitting .284/.367/.367.

Shortly after his release he signed a contract and finished the season with the Milwaukee Brewers.

He missed the 1998 season, played one game with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in 1999 as well as in the Mexican League.

His tour of professional baseball continued in 2000 as he played in the Korean Baseball Organization before returning to Mexico for the 2001 season.

He finished the 2001 season with the Atlanta Braves and finished the year hitting .300 (27 for 90) and began a rebirth in MLB. He spent the 2002-2005 season with the Braves, the 2006 season with the New York Mets,  and the 2007 season with both the Mets and Braves.

His last game action came last season at the age of 55 in the United Baseball League (UNLB) playing seven games and hit .222 (6 for 27).

Ed Carroll – “Ex-Indian Julio Franco To Join Japanese Team As Player Manager

It’s obvious that Julio Franco loves baseball but let him tell you about it:

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