The Obit For Todd Cruz

Former infielder Todd Cruz dead at 52

Sep 04, 2008 07:35 PM

Associated Press

BALTIMORE – Todd Cruz, an infielder with the 1983 world champion Baltimore Orioles, has died. He was 52.

Cruz died Tuesday while swimming at the apartment complex in which he lived in Bullhead City, Ariz. The cause of death is pending results of an autopsy conducted by the Mohave County Medical Examiner's Office.

Cruz played with six major league teams from 1978 to 1984. He broke into the big leagues with the Philadelphia Phillies, then played with Kansas City, the California Angels and Chicago White Sox from 1979-80. He did not play in the majors in 1981, but the following season participated in 136 games with Seattle.

He was traded by the Mariners to the Orioles in the middle of the 1983 season and batted .208 as Baltimore's third baseman. In the World Series against Philadelphia, won in five games by the Orioles, Cruz went 2-for-16 and scored a run.

He served as a utility infielder with the Orioles in 1984, his final major league season. He also pitched in a game, throwing a scoreless inning against New York in a 10-2 loss on Sept. 18.

Cruz had a lifetime .220 batting average in 544 games. He had 336 hits, including 34 home runs, and finished with 154 RBIs.

His most active season was 1983, when he played in 65 games Seattle and 81 with Baltimore. He finished with a .199 batting average that year.

Bullhead City Fire Department spokesman Larry Tunforss said bystanders pulled Cruz from the pool and were performing CPR when three city paramedics arrived. They took over life-saving efforts and transported him to a hospital.

Mohave County Medical Examiner Dr. Rexene Worrell said it will take about two weeks before an autopsy report on Cruz is completed and an exact cause of death confirmed.

Cruz is survived by a sister, Sharon Maceri, and two sons, Thaddeus and Dario.