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It Looked Like Forever
David Sabino
August 13, 2007
A quick recap of Julio Franco's marathon run through the majors
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August 13, 2007

It Looked Like Forever

A quick recap of Julio Franco's marathon run through the majors

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LAST WEEK the Braves released 48-year-old Julio Franco, whose career has been as interesting as it has been lengthy.

JUNE 23, 1978
The Phillies sign 19-year-old Dominican shortstop Franco as a free agent.

OCT. 24, 1981
Nationals reliever Beltran Perez is born.

APRIL 23, 1982
A 155-pound Franco goes 1 for 4 against the Cardinals in his big league debut.

APRIL 25, 1982
Franco walks against Jim Kaat, who faced Ted Williams on the final day of the 1959 season. ( Franco was the last remaining player to face a pitcher who faced Williams.)

DEC. 1982
After being traded to the Indians, Franco arrives in Cleveland with no coat, $5,000 stuffed into a sock and one question, "Where are the casinos?"

NOV. 23, 1983
In his first full season, finishes second to Chicago's Ron Kittle for AL Rookie of the Year.

Finds a Muscle magazine in the Cleveland clubhouse and soon becomes a fitness fanatic.

APRIL 19, 1985
After beating the Yankees with a homer, Franco repairs to a friend's joint in the Bronx: "The next day was my brother's birthday. After the game, we began to celebrate." Franco misses the next day's game. "Back then I was wild," he says years later. "Very wild."

Mild-mannered Tribe manager Doc Edwards tells the team he won't return in 1990 if Franco—who has a habit of bringing his rottweiler and snake to the stadium—is still on the team. Franco is soon traded to the Rangers.

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