Héctor Cruz (baseball)

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Héctor Cruz
Born: (1953-04-02) April 2, 1953 (age 64)
Arroyo, Puerto Rico
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
August 11, 1973, for the St. Louis Cardinals
Last MLB appearance
July 15, 1982, for the Chicago Cubs
MLB statistics
Batting average .225
Home runs 39
Runs batted in 200
Career highlights and awards

Héctor Louis Cruz Dilan (born April 2, 1953) is a former outfielder and third baseman in Major League Baseball. Listed at 5' 11", 170 lb., he batted and threw right handed.

Born in Arroyo, Cruz came from a distinguished baseball family of Puerto Rico. He is the younger brother of former major leaguers José and Tommy Cruz, while his nephew José Jr. also played in the majors.

Cruz played in the Cardinals minor league system from 1970 through 1973. He debuted with the big team in September 1973, but was demoted to the minors again the following year. He returned to the Cardinals in 1975, playing for them three seasons before joining the Chicago Cubs (1978), San Francisco Giants (1978–1979) and Cincinnati Reds (1979–1980), and in second stint with the Cubs (1981-1982).

In 1975 Cruz was named by The Sporting News as the Minor League Player of the Year, after hitting 29 home runs and 116 runs batted in for the Tulsa Oilers of the American Association.

In 1976, his first regular season with the Cardinals, Cruz topped the National League rookies with 13 homers and 71 RBIs, but also led the league third basemen with 26 errors. Then he switched to outfield, although he did not play regularly for the rest of his career.

In a nine-season career, Cruz was a .225 hitter with 39 home runs and 200 RBIs in 624 games appearances. After that, he played in Japan for the Yomiuri Giants in 1983.

Following his playing retirement, he worked for the United States Postal Service as a mail carrier on the North Side of Chicago.

In 2007, Cruz gained induction into the Caribbean Baseball Hall of Fame as part of its 11th Class.