I'm fascinated by the career of Julio Franco. The Atlanta Braves released the 48 year old yesterday, but I'm hopeful he'll be back in the big leagues. This guy's longevity is astounding.
Thanks to my new favourite blog I can tell you that Julio Franco has faced 1167 different pitchers in his major league career. 857 of those pitchers have already retired, 8 are already in the hall of fame and 15 are dead.
Think about it. This guy is still playing and he's faced Steve Carlton, Rollie Fingers, Gaylord Perry and Tom Seaver. It just blows my mind that he had three seasons under his belt before our Jays won their first AL East pennant.
We'll close with this little tidbit from Franco's Wikipedia page. Julio Franco was the only active player to face a pitcher who pitched against Hall of Famer Ted Williams, who retired in 1960. The pitcher is Jim Kaat, who played in the majors from 1959 to 1983. Williams had batted against Kaat the final day of the 1959 season, Kaat's rookie year. Kaat walked Franco in the latter's rookie season in 1982.
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