Ruben Amaro Sr., longtime Phillies fixture, dies at 81

By Arthur Weinstein 1 April 2017
Ruben Amaro Sr., longtime Phillies fixture, dies at 81

Ruben Amaro Sr., who won a Gold Glove as a player with the Phillies and later served as a coach, scout and executive in the organization, has died at age 81.

The Philadelphia Inquirer said Amaro died Friday in a Miami nursing home.

Born in Veracruz, Mexico, Amaro broke into the majors in 1958 with the Cardinals, but was traded to the Phillies for the 1960 season. He spent six seasons in Philadelphia, winning a Gold Glove as a shortstop in 1964. Amaro also logged significant time at first base. He finished his MLB career in 1969 after stints with the Yankees and the Angels.

But Amaro was always a Phillie at heart. As he told the Inquirer in 2009, "I have a 'P' in the middle of my chest. I played behind Robin Roberts and Jim Bunning. I knew Steve Carlton and Mike Schmidt. I was there for the beginning of Ryan Howard and Jimmy Rollins [in the minors]. I would really like very much to be buried with the Phillies uniform."

Amaro's son, Ruben Jr., played eight seasons in the majors in the 1990s, incuding five years in Philadelphia. He later served as GM of the team. Another son, Luis, played in the Phils' minor league system.

Amaro finished his career with 505 hits and a .234 career batting average. After his playing days, he spent more than 25 years as a coach, scout and executive for the Phillies. According to the Inquirer, his ties in Latin America helped the Phillies sign future stars such as Juan Samuel and Julio Franco.

More recently, Amaro served on the board of the Baseball Assistance Team, which helps former players through financial and medical hardships.

 

 

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