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Sunday, August 7, 2022

Will Vespe got big win for Miami; Played two pro seasons, then attempted post-surgery comeback


Will Vespe hadn't been used much with the University of Miami in 1989, but he helped pitch the team to the regional title, The Miami Herald wrote.

His performance gained praise from teammate Alex Fernandez, according to The Herald.

"He finally got his chance at the regional, and he came out of the dark to throw nine innings," Fernandez told The Herald. "He gave us the momentum that put us in the World Series. I've learned so much from him."

While Fernandez would go on to make the bigs, Vespe turned pro, but his career proved brief. Vespe played two seasons. He topped out at high-A.

Vespe's career began that year in 1989, signed by the Indians as an undrafted free agent out of Miami.

Vespe had originally been taken by the Twins in 1988, in the 30th round. Vespe, however, knew immediately he didn't want to sign.

"I'll be here next year," Vespe told The Herald. "I'm not leaving Miami early."

Vespe started with the Indians at short-season Watertown. He went 2-3, with a 2.66 ERA over 17 appearances, three starts. 

He then moved to high-A Kinston for 1990. He went 3-5 there, with a 3.29 ERA in 18 outings, two starts. 

Vespe then underwent reconstructive elbow surgery, causing him to miss the second half of 1990 and all of 1991, his hometown Camden Courier-Post wrote. He tried to come back with the Rangers in 1992, but instead played in Mexico. 

For 1993, he hoped for a comeback with the Marlins.

"This is it for me," Vespe told The Courier-Post in January 1993. "I'm just going to give it my best shot."

Vespe didn't make it to the regular season, ending his career.

1990 Minor League Tally 
Players/Coaches Featured:3,995
Made the Majors:1,329-33.3%
Never Made Majors:2,666-66.7%-X
5+ Seasons in the Majors:544
10+ Seasons in the Minors:329

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