Sunday, May 13, 2018

Luis Aguayo, Thinking About - 32

Luis Aguayo hit 37 home runs over his 10-season major league career. On one night in May 1987, he hit two, one a go-ahead solo shot late, UPI wrote.

Afterward, Aguayo tried to explain his success.

"I'm never thinking home runs," Aguayo told UPI. "The first was on a low changeup. Then I got a slider. I got better wood on the second one."

Aguayo wrapped up his playing career by 1992 and then embarked on a new career thinking about a lot of things baseball as a coach and manager. He even made it back to the bigs with the Mets in 2008 as a base coach.

Aguayo's career began in 1976, signed by the Phillies out of his native Puerto Rico.

Aguayo started at single-A Spartanburg and short-season Auburn. He made AA Reading in 1978 and AAA Oklahoma City in 1979. He then debuted in Philadelphia in 1980.

Aguayo got into 20 games for the Phillies that first year. He went 13 for 47, with one home run. He then got into another 45 games in 1981 and 50 in 1982.

He largely stayed with the big club into 1989. He saw 91 games in 1985 and 94 in 1987. He hit .206, with a career-high 12 home runs in 1987. Aguayo closed out that year with a game-winning, spoiler home run against the Mets.

"I was sitting on a breaking ball," Aguayo told UPI. "Because that's what he usually gives me with two strikes. He tried to sneak a fastball in and I just reacted. I had good contact."

Aguayo moved to the Yankees in mid-1988, then closed out his major league career in 1989 with 47 games played with the Indians. He then played three more seasons in the minors, including 1990 with the Angels at AA Midland and AAA Edmonton, to end his playing career.

Aguayo then joined the Red Sox at AAA Pawtucket for 1993 as hitting coach. He became manager for the Gulf Coast League Red Sox in 1997, then the short-season Lowell Spinners in 1999.

He then spent time in the Reds and Mets organizations, before landing with the Cardinals as manager of high-A Palm Beach in 2010. In 2012, Aguayo managed the single-A Quad City River Bandits. He later became the St. Louis international field coordinator.

In 2008, as third base coach for the Mets, Aguayo explained his approach to The New York Times.

"As a third-base coach, you feel that you didn't make a mistake - you think that it was a gamble and you lost," Aguayo told The Times of sending runners that don't make it. "It's an everyday job at third base for us. When we're winning, I need to play aggressive, I need to keep putting pressure."
1990 Minor League Tally
Players/Coaches Featured: 2,942
Made the Majors:1,091-37.1%-X
Never Made Majors:1,851-62.9%
5+ Seasons in the Majors: 452-X
10+ Seasons in the Minors:272

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