Former Astros shortstop Julio Lugo passes away at 45

Mandatory Credit: Elsa/ALLSPORT
Mandatory Credit: Elsa/ALLSPORT /

Former Houston Astros’ shortstop Julio Lugo passes away at 45-years-old, his family says

On Monday, Enrique Rojas of ESPN reported that former Houston Astros‘ shortstop Julio Lugo has passed, presumably due to a heart attack. The 12-year veteran was only 45-years-old.

Lugo was drafted by the Astros in the 43rd round of the 1994 MLB draft, and later signed on May 17, 1995 with the then National League ball club. Lugo made his major-league debut on April 15, 2000 at the start of the regular season.

The Dominican-born ball player played only four seasons with the Astros, slashing to a .268/.332/.391 line. Lugo collected 45 stolen bases and 28 home runs in that time, while manning shortstop.

The Astros released Lugo during the ’03 season, while being picked up by the Tampa Bay Rays soon after. The right-hander hit a career-high 15 home runs that year, while slashing four in one game in September.

Lugo’s stay in Houston didn’t last as long as many fans had hoped for, but the journey man made a few stops along the way in his major-league career. The shortstop played for the Rays, the Boston Red Sox, the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Atlanta Braves, the Baltimore Orioles and the St. Louis Cardinals.

Lugo played 12 seasons at the major-league level with his career coming to an end in 2011 with the Braves. The righty slashed .269/.333/.384 across all his seasons with 80 home runs and 1279 hits.

While falling short by a little less than a year of a 10-year service time career, Lugo didn’t pick up many accolades along the way. But in his career, he was crowned a World Series champion in 2007 with the Red Sox, while also being a National League Player of the Week on Sept. 10, 2000 with the Astros.

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