Ruben Amaro Sr., a gold glove shortstop for the Philadelphia Phillies, died Friday, Mar. 31, 2017 in Miami, according to multiple news sources. He was 81.
Amaro played 11 seasons in the major leagues, six of them with the Philadelphia Phillies. A light-hitting shortstop, he was known for his slick fielding and won a gold glove in 1964. That season the Phillies lost a 6 ½ game lead over the last two weeks of the season and missed out on a trip to the World Series.
After breaking into the majors with the St. Lous Cardinals in 1958, Amaro was traded to Philadelphia. He later played for the Yankees and Angels before the end of his major league career in 1969. He had a career batting average of .234 with 8 home runs and 156 runs batted in.
Amaro was born Jan. 6, 1936 in Veracruz, Mexico. His father, Santos Amaro, was a Cuban and Mexican Baseball Hall of Fame player. Ruben joined his father in the Mexican Baseball Hall of Fame in 1986. Ruben’s son, Ruben Amaro Jr., also became a major league baseball player, and later went on serve as General Manager of the Phillies from 2009 – 2015.
Following the end of his playing career, Amaro had a lengthy career as a coach and scout in American minor and major leagues, as well as leagues in Venezuela and Mexico.
He was first-base coach with the Phillies when the franchise won its first World Series championship in 1980.
Phillies hall of fame third baseman Mike Schmidt described Amaro as a fantastic baseball man. “He was very passionate, but very soft-spoken,” Schmidt said in 2009. “Very intelligent, fun guy to be around.”