The 5'8" Cangelosi was the surprise of the White Sox' 1986 spring camp when he displaced
Rudy Law and Daryl Boston to win the centerfield job. The spunky switch-hitter drew
walks and stole 50 bases, an AL rookie record. But a 0-for-31 drought dropped his
average below .230, and he was benched. Dealt to Pittsburgh in 1987, he batted .275,
mostly pinch hitting, and on September 15 he became the first Pirate in 21 years
to steal home.
After his last year with the Pirates in 1990, Cangelosi bounced in and out of the major leagues, playing for the Rangers, Mets and Astros. Finally in 1997, he joined the Marlins and was a part of the 1997 World Series championship team.
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FROM THE BASEBALL CHRONOLOGY
»January 12, 1982: In the January draft, the Blue Jays use the #1 pick on OF Kash Beauchamp and the Cubs follow by taking C Troy Afenir. Huh! The Twins, picking 3rd, take Kirby Puckett. The Reds choose Randy Myers on the first round while the Mets select Kal Daniels on the 3rd round. The 433rd pick overall is John Cangelosi, taken by the White Sox.
»July 4, 1986: At Comiskey Park, with the score 1–1 in the bottom of the 8th, Sox OF John Cangelosi leads off with a drive to the RF corner. A fans leans out of the stands and appears to touch the ball as he tumbles onto the field. Anticipating an interference call, Yankee OF Claudell Washington slows down, while the speedy Cangelosi easily makes 3B. The umps don't see any interference and Cangelosi remains on 3B, and scores on a sac fly. Sox win 2–1.
»August 12, 1996:
The Expos defeat the Astros, 8-1, in a game marked by a 3rd-inning 10-minute brawl which will result in 4-game suspensions being handed down to Henry Rodriguez, Moises Alou, David Segui, Jeff Juden, and John Cangelosi. Danny Darwin gets six games. Houston manager Terry Collins receives a gash that will require four stitches to close when he's hit by a thrown batting helmet. The fight starts when Rodriguez is plunked by a pitch, the apparent result of his stopping and admiring a homer he hit his last time up. Al Leiter pitches a 3-hitter to win, although he gives up a leadoff homer to Brian Hunter.
»July 21, 1997:
At Miami, Wally Joyner is 3-for-4 with two walks, to lead the Padres to a 10–2 gaffing of the Florida Marlins. Joyner singles, doubles, triples, scores twice, and swipes two bases, including home on the back end of a double steal. The Marlins finally turn to John Cangelosi, who becomes the first position player to pitch for the Marlins. The outfielder walks one in a scoreless ninth inning and retires Joyner on a fly ball. Cangelosi also pitched two scoreless innings for Pittsburgh against Los Angeles in 1988 and one scoreless inning for Houston against Chicago in 1995. Tony Gwynn is 1-for-5 and finishes the four-game series 2-for-17, dropping his average to .385.
»September 10, 1999:
The Rockies call up John Cangelosi from Sky Sox, where he has played the past month. The vet needs 12 days of ML service to reach his 10-year pension.