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Friday, April 30, 2021

Chris Fruge came on strong, then got delayed shot at pros; Saw single pro campaign

The White Sox came calling for junior college pitcher Chris Fruge in June 1988 and Fruge felt he was ready to make the switch, so the Mississippi Delta hurler signed, The Eunice News wrote.

"I'm still young and I just wanted to see what I could do," Fruge told The News then. "I missed the first month of the season this spring with a little tendinitis, but came on strong the rest of he way. You just never know if you can do it unless you try."

Fruge signed that year, but he didn't play. Whether it was a reoccurrence of his tendinitis or something else, Fruge didn't hit the field for the White Sox until two years later. 

Fruge's pro career then lasted a single season, spent entirely at short-season Utica.

Fruge's pro career began in 1988, taken by the White Sox in the 28th round of the draft out of Mississippi Delta Community College. Fruge was also credited as Chris L. Fruge, Christopher Fruge and Chris Frugé.

He played American Legion ball in 1985 and 1986 for the Eunice Oilers. He picked up a relief win and also hit a home run in a late-March 1985 game, then hit a grand slam for the Oilers in late-May 1985. He then threw a one-hitter in a March 1986 win.

His team prepared to go to the district tournament in July 1986 and coach John Burson looked to his pitchers, including Fruge, The Opelousas Daily World wrote. He named off three hurlers to be his starters as he looked for another.

"Those have pitched super," Burson told The Daily World of the three, including Fruge. "And it's been in the clutch."

Fruge continued at Mississippi Delta. In one May 1988 game, he struck out nine-straight batters. In another game that month, he struck out five of six.

He then signed with the White Sox, bypassing a scholarship offer to Ole Miss. But he didn't play. The next February, he was still listed as throwing for the White Sox, but again he didn't play.

Fruge finally hit the field in 1990 at Utica. He saw 25 games in relief. He went 2-4, with five saves and turned in a 3.21 ERA to mark the extent of his pro career.

1990 Minor League Tally 
Players/Coaches Featured:3,636
Made the Majors:1,249-34.4%
Never Made Majors:2,387-65.6%-X
5+ Seasons in the Majors:520
10+ Seasons in the Minors:307

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