Born: September 23, 1943|
Died: November 29, 2001 (aged 58)|
|April 14, 1963, for the Philadelphia Phillies|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 24, 1972, for the Cleveland Indians|
|Earned run average||3.62|
|Career highlights and awards|
López signed as an amateur free agent with the Philadelphia Phillies at just sixteen years old. He made his major league debut in 1963, but after just four appearances, was back in the minors by the end of April. After spending all of 1964 with Philadelphia's Triple-A affiliate, the Chattanooga Lookouts, he was the 'player to be named later" in the deal where the Phillies acquired Vic Power from the Los Angeles Angels for a player to be named later.
His numbers fell off considerably in 1966, largely because he led AL starters in hit batsmen with nine, and was second in the league with twelve wild pitches (the Chicago White Sox's Joe Horlen had 14). Shoulder injuries limited López to just nine innings for the Angels in 1967. On June 15, he and minor leaguer Tom Arruda were sent to the Baltimore Orioles for Woodie Held.
López spent all of 1968 in the minors before making his first major league appearance with the Orioles in 1969. At this point in his career, he was converted into a reliever, and was 4–2 with a 4.06 ERA out of the bullpen (he was 1–1 with a 5.40 ERA in his four starts).
The Orioles ran away with the American League East by nineteen games over the Detroit Tigers. López's only appearance in the 1969 American League Championship Series came in game one. In the twelfth inning, he faced four batters, retiring only one before manager Earl Weaver removed him in favor of Dick Hall. He did not make an appearance in the 1969 World Series against the New York Mets.
López became one of the most reliable relievers in Baltimore's bullpen in 1970, as he had a 1.65 ERA in relief. He was 1–0 with a 3.18 ERA as a starter. Baltimore returned to the post-season, and again, López made just one appearance. In the second game of the World Series, he faced just one batter, Bobby Tolan, and got him to fly out to Brooks Robinson in foul territory.
During spring training the following season, López was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers for Roric Harrison and minor leaguer Marion Jackson. He began the 1971 season as a reliever, but was added to the starting rotation midway through the season. Though he had a respectable 4.14 ERA, he was just 1–5 as a starter.
López's contract was purchased by the Cleveland Indians during spring training 1972. After spending the entire season with Cleveland's Triple-A affiliate, the Portland Beavers, López made four appearances with the Indians that September. He played minor league ball for the San Diego Padres, Pittsburgh Pirates and Houston Astros before retiring. He died in 2001 at age 58.
- "Philadelphia Phillies 5, St. Louis Cardinals 4". Baseball-Reference.com. April 14, 1963.
- "1969 American League Championship Series, Game One". Baseball-Reference.com. October 4, 1969.
- "1970 World Series, Game Two". Baseball-Reference.com. October 11, 1970.