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Monday, June 8, 2015

Bruce Bucz worked to fill seats with W's as Visalia Oaks GM

Bruce Bucz 1990 Visalia Oaks card
Bruce Bucz was especially interested in his Visalia Oaks winning, The Los Angeles Times wrote in 1989.

That's because as team general manager his job filling seats and selling ads was made much easier with more Ws than Ls.

"Winning is the best promotion," Bucz told The Times that August.

Bucz was in his third season as general manager for the single-A Oaks that year. He went on to serve a few more and serve as a local event promoter in Visalia.

Bucz became a minor league GM after graduating from Southern Illinois University with a bachelor's in athletic administration and a master's in sports management, according to his card back.

He started with the team as assistant general manager, serving in that capacity for three years before moving to the top job for 1987. Along with Bucz, both his parents, Joseph and Mary Bucz, worked at the park.

As assistant general manager in 1986, Bucz assessed some of his new players to The Times at season's beginning. Among them was a pitcher Bucz was impressed with named Ray Velasquez.

"I wouldn't be surprised if he moved up before the season ends," Bucz told The Times.

Bucz continued as Visalia general manager through at least 1992. In 1996 he was named vice president of marketing for the Fresno Falcons hockey team.

He later served as director for the Visalia area's largest food pantry, the Visalia Emergency Aid Council. With the council, Bucz started the fundraiser Blues, Brews and Barbecue.

In 2008, Bucz was identified as a local event promoter in Visalia, telling The Visalia Times-Delta, praising the city on its support of the music scene.
1990 Minor League Tally
Players/Coaches Featured: 2,060
Made the Majors: 906-44.0%
Never Made Majors:1,154-56.0%
5+ Seasons in the Majors: 386
10+ Seasons in the Minors:222

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