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Frank Estrada

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Francisco Estrada Soto
(Paquín)

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[edit] Biographical Information

Catcher Frank Estrada was traded with Nolan Ryan to the California Angels, but his only major league time consisted of a single game for the New York Mets in 1971. During a 30-year pro career, however, "Paquín" was behind the plate for roughly 4,000 games. That is far more than anyone else in pro baseball history.

Estrada holds the minor league baseball record for games caught (2,847). He spent 26 summers in the Mexican League, from 1966 to 1970 and 1974 through 1994, totaling 2,415 games. In the winters Estrada played 1,538 games across 30 seasons (1964-65 through 1993-94).

Estrada's best offensive season was early in his career - in 1970 the 22-year-old backstop hit .303/.405/.529. He hit 18 homers, 10 more than his next-best year in Mexico; 11 triples, 7 more than his next-best season in Mexico; his slugging percentage was over 100 points above his 2nd best season in La Liga Mexicana; his 72 walks were 10 more than any other season there. Noted more for his defense than his bat, he hit .275 and slugged .357 in Mexico. He topped .300 5 times in the Mexican League but also hit .230 or less 4 times.

In his only major league appearance, on September 14, 1971, he replaced Mets regular catcher Jerry Grote with his team trailing 12-0 in the 6th inning of the first game of a doubleheader against the Montreal Expos. He caught the remainder of the game and went to bat twice, singling off Bill Stoneman in first at-bat, and then grounding out to first base to end the game in the bottom of the 9th. He thus has a career major league batting average of .500. He allowed a passed ball in four innings behind the plate in becoming the first Mexican catcher in major league history.

In 2000, he was selected to Mexico's Salon de la Fama as a player, but he is also the most successful manager in his nation's history.

Estrada has led teams to Mexican League titles in 1983, 1990 and 2004 (he had begun managing while still an active player). He managed the Mexican team in the 2006 World Baseball Classic. He managed Campeche in 1983, 1985, 1986, 1988 and 2003-2005. He also piloted Toluca (1984), the Leon Braves (1989-1991), Minatitlan Petroleros (1992-1994), Puebla Angels (1995), Langosteros de Cancun (1998-1999), Yucatan Lions (2000-2002) and Dorados de Chihuahua (2007 until April 2009).

Estrada played in eight Caribbean Series and managed in four. He won the 1986 Caribbean Series as a player and 1996 Caribbean Series and 2002 Caribbean Series as a skipper. In 2013, he was inducted into the Caribbean Baseball Hall of Fame.

His brother Héctor Estrada also played and managed in Mexico.

[edit] Year-by-Year Managerial Record

Year Team League Record Finish Playoffs Notes
1983 Piratas de Campeche Mexican League 70-44 2nd League Champs
1984 Truchas de Toluca Mexican League -- -- replaced by Max Oliveras
1985 Piratas de Campeche Mexican League 58-60 11th
1986 Piratas de Campeche Mexican League 70-57 6th Lost in 1st round
1987 Piratas de Campeche Mexican League 58-57 9th
1988 Piratas de Campeche Mexican League 62-65 10th
1989 Bravos de León Mexican League 73-57 3rd Lost in 1st round
1990 Bravos de León Mexican League 74-57 5th League Champs
1991 Bravos de León Mexican League 73-45 3rd Lost in 2nd round
1992 Petroleros de Minatitlán Mexican League 72-58 3rd Lost in 2nd round
1993 Petroleros de Minatitlán Mexican League 60-66 11th
1994 Petroleros de Minatitlán Mexican League 57-71 13th
1995 Pericos de Puebla Mexican League 52-63 12th
1996 Quintana Roo Lobstermen Mexican League 55-55 8th (t)
1997 Quintana Roo Lobstermen Mexican League 61-56 7th Lost in 2nd round
1998 Langosteros de Cancún Mexican League 62-56 7th Lost in 1st round
1999 Langosteros de Cancún Mexican League -- -- replaced by Francisco Chavez
2000 Leones de Yucatán Mexican League 69-52 4th Lost in 2nd round
2001 Leones de Yucatán Mexican League 68-53 5th (t) Lost in 1st round
2002 Leones de Yucatán Mexican League 60-47 5th Lost in 1st round
2003 Piratas de Campeche Mexican League 55-51 8th Lost in 1st round
2004 Piratas de Campeche Mexican League 55-42 5th League Champs
2005 Piratas de Campeche Mexican League 62-43 2nd Lost in 1st round
2006 Piratas de Campeche Mexican League 47-61 13th
2007 Dorados de Chihuahua Mexican League 45-63 13th
2008 Dorados de Chihuahua Mexican League 54-53 10th Lost in 1st round
2009 Dorados de Chihuahua Mexican League -- -- replaced by Arturo DeFreites
2011 Petroleros de Minatitlan Mexican League 11th replaced Shamar Almeida

Sources:

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