John Cerutti (THE TOPPS COMPANY)

John Cerutti

This article was written by Malcolm Allen

John Cerutti (THE TOPPS COMPANY)As of 2021, lefty pitcher John Cerutti is the last man from Amherst College to have played in the majors. Over seven major league seasons from 1985 to 1991, Cerutti posted a winning record in nearly an equal number of starts and relief appearances. Other than his final season with the Detroit Tigers, he spent his entire career with the Toronto Blue Jays. He was a Blue Jays broadcaster when he died from a cardiac arrhythmia at age 44.

John Joseph Cerutti was born on April 28, 1960, in Albany, New York. His father, Dan (a bricklayer) had married Marlene Decker from the Canadian city of St. Catharines, Ontario, in 1957.1 They had six children: Danny, John, David, Mary, Paul and Lisa. The family were Catholics of Italian and Polish descent.2 “[John] made me feel special. I now know he had this effect on a lot of people,” Paul recalled in 2008. “He would always include me … Sometimes when the older kids objected and said I can’t play, John would say, ‘Paul is on my team’.”3

Cerutti described one of the first times he gained notice for his baseball ability. “They used to call me ‘Freddie Lynn,’” he recalled. “When I was 15 in 1975, I was hitting .534 and I was a left-handed center fielder in Babe Ruth [League].”4 His future was on the mound, however, and a mentor named Ron Morrison helped Cerutti realize his potential. Until he was stricken by polio as a teen in 1952, Morrison had been a promising southpaw himself. Often confined to a wheelchair, Morrison had a pitchers’ mound in his backyard and coached local teams, including North Albany’s Post 1610 American Legion club and the junior varsity squad at the Christian Brothers Academy. John played under him for six years. “He taught me how to pitch and always said that I’d be a pro pitcher one day,” Cerutti said. “He taught us kids in Albany a lot about baseball. But all the time he was teaching us a lot about life, too.”5

John attended high school at Christian Brothers Academy in Albany and was eventually enshrined in its athletic Hall of Fame as a four-year letter winner in baseball, basketball, and golf. In 1978, as Ron Guidry streaked to a 13-0 start for the New York Yankees, Cerutti matched him victory-for-victory as his graduation from CBA approached. “Guidry was my idol right through my teen years. I was a Yankee fan, but especially a Ron Guidry fan,” he said.6

Cerutti enrolled at Amherst, a small liberal arts college in central Massachusetts with an excellent academic reputation, majoring in math and economics. He enjoyed painting in his spare time, and the school purchased one of his works. “You’re the sanest lefty I ever coached,” baseball coach Bill Thurston told him.7 Each Amherst player received a thick, instructional manual that Thurston had authored after spending three years as an outfielder in the Detroit Tigers chain. Thurston’s 44 seasons (1966-2009) as Amherst’s coach produced 23 players who signed professional contracts and 16 others who landed administrative jobs in Major League Baseball.8 (All told, there have been 14 men from Amherst to reach the top level. The majority of them played early in the 20th century; eight appeared in fewer than 10 games. Cerutti would go on to appear in 229 games.)

Cerutti earned All-New England recognition three times and was named both the team MVP and a Division III first-team All-American twice.9 After his 1980 sophomore season, he played summer ball for the Harwich (Massachusetts) Mariners in the Cape Cod Baseball League. When he returned to Amherst for his junior year, he was the most heavily scouted player in school history. “It bothered me earlier this season,” he confessed after about 20 bird dogs showed up for one of his starts. “But I just blank ’em out and concentrate on my catcher.”10 He went 11-1 with 136 strikeouts in 83 innings in 1981 to finish his three-year Lord Jeffs11 career with a 29-5 record and 1.95 ERA.12

Prior to the Northeast East-West All-Star Game at Fenway Park on June 2, Thurston said, “[Cerutti] isn’t the power pitcher that [Yale University’s Ron] Darling is, but he figures to be picked in the first round. Cerutti does have pretty good heat, and a major league curveball.”13 Seven days later, after the Blue Jays selected him in the first round of the June amateur draft (21st overall), Cerutti signed a professional contract with Toronto scout Paul Ricciarini.14 He reported to the Medicine Hat (Alberta, Canada) Blue Jays and hurled 107 innings in 14 starts to lead the Rookie-level Pioneer League and earn All-Star honors.15 His 8-4 record tied teammate Stan Clarke for the second-most wins in the circuit, and his 120 strikeouts trailed only Lethbridge’s Sid Fernandez (128).

In 1982, Cerutti soared up the ladder in Toronto’s farm system. He began the season in Kinston, North Carolina, by going 10-5 in 16 Single-A Carolina League starts while averaging 10.8 strikeouts and 7.0 hits allowed per nine innings. Following a July promotion to the Double-A Southern League, he won all four of his starts with a 1.11 ERA for the Knoxville Blue Jays. Just before Cerutti moved up to the Triple-A International League on August 5, Toronto manager Bobby Cox told the Boston Globe’s Peter Gammons that the 22-year-old lefty might be in the majors the following year.16

In his half-dozen starts for the Syracuse Chiefs, however, Cerutti was 0-3 with a 6.60 ERA. “He told [Chiefs manager] Jim Beauchamp that he really learned something there,” said Blue Jays’ pitching coach Al Widmar. “He’d been in college and wasn’t learning much at the lower minor-league levels.” When the Blue Jays sent Cerutti to Barranquilla, Colombia, to gain winter ball experience, he lost weight from a mild case of hepatitis and saw real poverty up close for the first time. “My life changed,” he recalled. “From the bus, you’d see little kids in rags running around on a dirt floor … It makes you think. We take running water for granted. There, you’re not sure the water is going to run.”17

Cerutti began 1983 by attending Blue Jays’ spring training as a non-roster player and finished the year on the club’s 40-man roster. On June 25, he married Tucson native Claudia Laks. He spent the entire season with Double-A Knoxville and completed nine of his 28 starts. Despite posting a 3.43 ERA –well under the league average of 4.09– and tying for tops in the circuit with three shutouts, Cerutti’s record was only 9-13. “He was flailing his arms trying to throw too hard,” Widmar explained in spring training 1984. “So, we compacted him and tried to get him to stay more closed. As he’s gotten it down this spring, he’s added velocity and control.”18

During a full Triple-A season in 1984, Cerutti struggled to a 7-13 record and 4.44 ERA in 29 appearances (22 starts) for Syracuse. At one point, he lost seven straight decisions.19 In his last 57 2/3 innings, though, he had a 2.34 ERA with a 53:13 strikeout-to-walk ratio, including 10 whiffs without a single base on balls in his final outing. Toronto’s Globe and Mail called him the Chiefs’ most improved player. 20 He continued improving in 1985, going 11-9 with a 2.97 ERA in 28 games (27 starts) for Syracuse while hurling more innings (182) than any IL southpaw. After the Chiefs’ season ended, the Blue Jays brought him to the majors.

Cerutti landed in Toronto on September 1, 1985, with three other Syracuse callups: Kelly Gruber, Rick Leach and Ron Shepherd. They listened to the Sunday afternoon Blue Jays-White Sox game on their way to Exhibition Stadium, and the contest was in the fourth inning when they arrived.21 With one out in the top of the seventh and first-place Toronto trailing, 4-0, Cerutti was summoned to face Harold Baines with the bases loaded. After missing high with one curveball and bouncing a second, he threw three fastballs to the lefty-hitting future Hall of Famer, who foul-tipped the first and swung through the next two. With righty-hitting Carlton Fisk due up next, Cox replaced him with right-hander Bill Caudill. “It took me a moment to figure out I was being relieved,” he recalled. “As I walked off the field to a big ovation, I was thinking, ‘I have struck out everyone I have faced in the big leagues and they are taking me out of the game.’”22

With Toronto attempting to nail down the first playoff berth in franchise history, Cerutti pitched just twice over the next five weeks, both times against the Red Sox. On September 18, he appeared in a blowout loss at Fenway Park. One week later, he suffered his first major league loss after surrendering a 13th-inning home run to fellow rookie Mike Greenwell. After the Blue Jays clinched the AL East on the next-to-last day, they decided to pitch Cerutti in the regular-season finale against the Yankees. “I didn’t find out I was starting until I got to the park,” he recalled. “[New York’s] Phil Niekro was going for [career win] number 300 and I was going for number one.”23 Three unearned runs after a first-inning infield error were all that Cerutti allowed in his four innings, but his record dropped to 0-2 as Niekro achieved his milestone victory with a four-hit shutout – eschewing his signature knuckleball until the last batter – in front of 44,422. “It was a thrill for me to pitch against him,” Cerutti said. “I’m the only pitcher that can say he was the losing pitcher when Phil won his 300th game. I guess that’s some consolation.”24

Instead of cracking the Blue Jays’ Opening Day roster in 1986, Cerutti returned to Syracuse for a third straight year. The Toronto Star reported that some within the organization didn’t think he was hungry enough. “It seems after you’ve been here a while that the only way you can impress them is to go out and blow everybody away,” Cerutti said. “I’d like to go to another team, get a fresh start. You go somewhere else and they see you for the first time, see all the positive things. Here, they already knew the positives, so they kept looking for the negatives.”25

Shortly after Cerutti’s 26th birthday, he struggled through an inconsistent start against the Maine Guides with Toronto Vice President Bobby Mattick in attendance. Afterwards, Mattick asked him if he’d ever tried pitching without a windup. Cerutti tried it and improved almost immediately. “In my mind, it eliminates rushing my hand. My body would go to the plate, but my arm was late. It made me more compact,” he explained. “I really think that has made the difference. It has made me more consistent.”26 Though his record was only 1-3 in seven Triple-A starts, Cerutti learned that he was going back to the majors on May 15. “[New Blue Jays manager] Jimy [Williams told me … I’d be the fifth starter when he needed one and otherwise come out of the bullpen,” Cerutti said. “I’ll do whatever necessary to help the team.”27

Two days after Cerutti’s promotion, his wife graduated from University of Arizona Law School. She was planning to rendezvous with him for the first time since spring training in Syracuse but changed her plans and flew to Chicago instead. On May 20 at Comiskey Park, John held the White Sox to two runs over seven innings but lost, 2-1. Five days later in Cleveland, he earned his first big league victory by hurling eight innings of two-hit ball. Widmar adjusted Cerutti’s hands closer to his belt to help him keep his pitches down.28 On June 24, the lefty throttled the Brewers with a six-hitter for his first shutout. “We didn’t know what the hell the kid was throwing,” remarked Milwaukee manager George Bamberger. “He changed his speeds very well.”

“I’m very excited about this,” Cerutti confessed. “It was especially nice to see the fans on their feet cheering for me at the end. I was really pumped up by the time I got the last out.”29 Cerutti finished his rookie season with a 9-4 record and 4.15 ERA in 34 games (20 starts). “It took me a little longer than I expected maybe, but I was patient, and they were patient with me,” he said. “I’m still young and have a future, and we have a future as a team.”30

At Amherst, Cerutti had written a paper called “Determination of Player Salaries in the Major Leagues.” After earning the major league minimum of $60,000 plus $30,000 in incentives in 1986, however, he was baffled when the Blue Jays mailed him a 1987 contract for less than $90,000.31 He was told not to be insulted because it was just a formality, and they agreed on a $115,000 salary.32 Two years later, Cerutti became Toronto’s player representative.

Cerutti understood that he’d remain the fifth starter/swingman again in 1987. “I see myself as a starter down the road, but I have that versatility I can give the club,” he said. “There’s definitely a different mental approach to preparation between the two jobs.”33 Nine of his first dozen appearances came out of the bullpen before he beat the Angels with a four-hitter on May 31. On June 9 in New York, he outpitched his idol. “I always dreamed I’d face Guidry in [Yankee] Stadium and beat him,” confessed Cerutti after Toronto’s 7-2 triumph.34 He’d imagined that it would be a 1-0 duel, but Guidry was gone after four innings and Cerutti was removed with two out in the sixth.

In 13 starts and five relief outings between May 31 and August 14, Cerutti won eight straight decisions. “I’m getting my breaking ball over, and I can throw it and my change anywhere in the count,” he explained. “I can keep those guys honest, and I can sneak the fastball in on their hands and on the outside corner.”35

Toronto acquired lefty Mike Flanagan on August 31. The former Cy Young Award winner was a southpaw, as was Jimmy Key, the club’s leading winner that season. “I’ve talked a lot with Flanagan. He’s got that experience, and he and I throw similarly – fastball, curve and change,” Cerutti said. “I have learned a lot from watching Jimmy Key. He’s a model of consistency and that is something we all strive for.”36 Cerutti went to the bullpen for the last two weeks of the season. On September 21, he retired the only batter he faced to earn the victory that lifted Toronto back into first place, but the Blue Jays lost their final seven games and the AL East.

Cerutti finished with an 11-4 record and 4.40 ERA in 44 games (21 starts). “I feel I’ve reached the point now where I’ve proven myself and I deserve to start – and I’ve told management that,” he said after the season.37 His biggest drawback was his propensity to surrender home runs. Of the club-worst 30 he allowed in 151 1/3 innings, 25 came in his 108 innings as a starter.

During a routine physical examination that fall, orthopedic specialist Dr. Arthur Pappas surprised Cerutti by discovering that the muscles in the back of the pitcher’s throwing shoulder were too weak, an issue that could become serious if it wasn’t addressed. Cerutti went to work with a Cybex isokinetic machine to simultaneously build and measure strength. The Cybex had typically been used by athletes rehabilitating from injuries, like Flanagan. “[Flanagan] said he couldn’t understand why people wait for an injury to use it. Why not use it for preventative maintenance?” Cerutti explained. “That’s what I’m doing.”38

The Blue Jays raised Cerutti’s salary to more than $200,000 in 1988.39 They planned to keep shuffling him between the rotation and bullpen, however. “Nobody else on the staff can do it, except Cerutti and [righty] José Núñez,” Williams explained.40 Though Cerutti appeared in a career-high 46 games, only one of his 12 starts came after Key returned from the disabled list in late June. In it, Cerutti snapped Frank Viola’s 21-game winning streak (including playoffs) at the Metrodome. In the second half, another southpaw – 25-year-old Jeff Musselman – came up from Triple-A to join Toronto’s rotation while Cerutti teamed with rookie lefties David Wells and Tony Castillo in the bullpen. Williams insisted. “I’ve got nothing but good to say about [Cerutti]. We must think something of him, or he wouldn’t be here and I’m glad we have him.” But in August, Cerutti told Blue Jays GM Pat Gillick he’d like to be traded to a team where he could start if Toronto didn’t intend to utilize him that way.41

Cerutti finished 1988 with a modest 6-7 record, but his 3.13 ERA supported his contention that he was a better pitcher than ever. Contributing to the lower ERA was a reduction in his home runs allowed per nine innings from 1.8 to .9. At the winter meetings in December, Williams announced, “I think [Cerutti’s] earned a chance to be a regular starter.” Cerutti said he was glad. “I would hate to look back on my career a couple years from now and wonder what I could have done if I had the opportunity to start regularly. How many games I could have won, and how many innings I could have pitched. I don’t want to throw that potential away.”42

In addition to righty Dave Stieb, Toronto’s rotation in 1989 was also expected to include southpaws Key, Flanagan and Musselman. “I definitely have concerns about it,” Cerutti acknowledged. “None of us four have the [velocity] to blow batters away. We use breaking balls and sinker balls, and we like to keep batters off balance. That means it’ll be easier for the hitters, because they’ll see the same types of pitches from all four of us.”43 As it happened, Musselman made only three starts before entering an alcohol treatment center, while Key and Flanagan each posted losing records. Cerutti hurled a career-high 205 1/3 innings in 33 appearances (31 starts).

After the Blue Jays moved into their new ballpark, SkyDome, on June 5, Cerutti became the first Toronto pitcher to win there two nights later. The retractable roof was closed during his complete-game 11-hitter against the Brewers, making him the first big league pitcher to earn a victory in a contest that started exposed to the elements and ended under a roof.44 Cerutti did it again on August 2 against the Royals; when he pitched his second career shutout and lost a no-hit bid in the seventh inning on George Brett’s ground-rule double.45 “It’s really a spectacular place. It’s the way of the future, but I’ll still take Yankee Stadium or Tiger Stadium or Fenway or Comiskey,” Cerutti remarked. “Give me the grass field and the character and the different dimensions.”46

Through August 10, Cerutti had a 9-5 record, and his 2.39 ERA ranked second in the majors to California’s Bert Blyleven (2.35). However, he was hit hard in losing six of his last eight decisions and finished 11-11 with a 3.07 ERA. When he overthrew his sinker, it stayed up in the strike zone. “We had talked to him about throwing more curveballs because he had fallen in love with his sinker and he’s got a real good one,” observed catcher Ernie Whitt.47 Toronto overcame a slow start to win their division. In the best-of-seven ALCS, Cerutti made two scoreless relief appearances against the Oakland Athletics but the Blue Jays lost in five games.

Cerutti began 1990 with a secure rotation spot and a raise from $417,000 to $762,500.48 He was knocked out of his initial start in the first inning, however, and posted a 1-5 record in his first six. By July 26, a 7-2 run had lifted his record over .500 (7-6), but he was demoted to the bullpen by the end of August, after losing three of four starts. When he allowed a home run in his first relief outing, it made 11 straight appearances in which he’d been taken deep –a stretch of 57 2/3 innings with 14 homers. “Primarily he’s been getting the ball up in the strike zone lately,” observed Toronto pitching coach Galen Cisco. “He’s a much better pitcher when he’s keeping the ball down.”49

Disappointed by losing his starting job, Cerutti sent his agent, Craig Fenech, to meet with the Blue Jays’ front office. Toronto’s assistant GM, Gord Ash, said, “It comes down to this: You’re not going to move a John Cerutti unless you can do better than a John Cerutti.”50 After he finished the year with a 9-9 record and 4.76 ERA in 30 games (23 starts), the Blue Jays declined to offer him a contract, allowing him to seek a new team. “It was extremely honorable of them to honor the request,” Fenech said. “We agreed that we disagreed on the best way to utilize him.”51

On January 14, 1991, Cerutti signed a one-year deal with the Detroit Tigers for $800,000.52 After losing ace Jack Morris to free agency, Detroit’s rotation had two question marks behind veterans Frank Tanana, Walt Terrell and Bill Gullickson. The jobs went to righties Steve Searcy and Dan Petry in spring training, however, and Cerutti worked only 88 2/3 innings in 38 appearances (eight starts). His lone victory as a Tigers’ starter was a 5-2 victory over Key and the Blue Jays on August 16, 10 days after he’d lost a 2-1 decision to his former teammate in Toronto.

A free agent again, he signed a minor league deal with the Boston Red Sox for 1992. He began the season with the Triple-A Pawtucket Red Sox with the understanding that he could be released upon request to pursue another big league job if Boston didn’t promote him by June 1.53 Cerruti’s record was 7-2 in early June when he agreed to remain in the International League for a while longer. After he lost his next five decisions, however, he was released.54 Cerutti caught on with the Buffalo Bisons, the Pittsburgh Pirates’ Triple-A American Association affiliate. His record in nine appearances (eight starts) was 4-0, but his 5.36 ERA and average of 1.4 strikeouts per nine innings were unimpressive. In 1993, Cerutti went to spring training with the New York Mets to compete for a lefty reliever role, but he was released two weeks before Opening Day.55

Cerutti and his wife lived in Oldsmar, Florida, with their three children: Daniel, Nicole, and Janine. He played more golf to satisfy his yearning for competition and made a run at qualifying for the US Open in 1997.56 In 2000, after about 10 unsuccessful tries including a few near misses, he won the Country Golf Association Championship at Fox Hollow Golf Club, one of the Tampa Bay area’s premier amateur tournaments.57

It was in his hometown, however, that Cerutti transitioned into the next phase of his career. The Albany Diamond Dogs of the independent Northeast League hired him to pitch every fifth game and broadcast the other contests in 1995.58 In six starts before he suffered a knee injury that required surgery, he went 2-0 with a 2.17 ERA and didn’t walk anybody in 29 innings. After occasional appearances on Blue Jays’ radio and television broadcasts, Cerutti was hired by the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) as a full-time color commentator in 1997. He was mentored by his friend and neighbor in Oldsmar, Tom Cheek – the voice of the Blue Jays since 1977.59

Eventually, Cerutti moved over to TSN (The Sports Network) and continued to announce Toronto games. “A big reason I watched Blue Jays’ games, even through their tough seasons … was because of Mr. Cerutti,” one viewer recalled. “What I liked most about him was that he was a fair and humble person. He gave kudos to the players who made a good play and remarked on bad plays players made on either team.”60

On the final Saturday of the 2004 season, Cerutti had an estimated 17 family members at SkyDome for the Blue Jays-Yankees contest.61 On October 3, he uncharacteristically missed a pregame production meeting prior to the Sunday afternoon finale. After attempts to reach him at the hotel inside the ballpark failed, police and emergency workers entered his room while the game was in progress and found him dead of a heart arrhythmia. When Toronto’s players and coaches were told following the last out, they were stunned.62 Cerutti was 44. His remains were cremated.

Toronto’s chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America voted Cerutti the final recipient of the club’s Good Guy award before renaming it in his honor. In November 2005, shortly after Cheek lost his 16-month battle with brain cancer, John’s widow, Claudia Cerutti, presented Tom’s widow, Shirley Cheek, with the first John Cerutti Award.63 In addition to posthumously inducting Cerutti in 2016, the New York State Baseball Hall of Fame created the John Cerutti Sportsman Award.64

 

Acknowledgments

This biography was reviewed by Rory Costello and Norman Macht and fact-checked by Evan Katz.

 

Sources

In addition the sources cited in the Notes, the author consulted www.ancestry.com, www.baseball-reference.com and www.retrosheet.org.

 

Notes

1 Larry Millson, “Jays’ Prospect Pursues Dream,” Globe and Mail (Toronto), March 1, 1983: 48.

2 John Cerutti, Players Publicity Questionnaire, August 21, 1981.

3 “John Cerutti,” http://www.blogofdeath.com/2004/10/10/john-cerutti/ (last accessed April 9, 2021).

4 Tom Hawthorn, “Cerutti Manages to Make Presence Felt,” Globe and Mail, September 22, 1987: D1.

5 “Cerutti Mentor Was Confined to Wheelchair,” Toronto Star, August 28, 1986: D4.

6 Marty York, “Cerutti Could Ignite Southpaw Minefield,” Globe and Mail, January 12, 1989: A18.

7 Garth Woolsey, “Blue Jays’ John Cerutti No Lefty Prototype,” Toronto Star, August 26, 1986: H3.

8 Kevin Graber, “Coach Thurston’ Playbook,” Amherst Magazine, Spring 2008, https://www.amherst.edu/amherst-story/magazine/issues/2008_spring/sports/thurston (last accessed April 9, 2021).

9 Cerutti, Players Publicity Questionnaire.

10 Woody Anderson, “Cerutti Entertains ‘Scouting Party,’” Hartford Courant, April 29, 1981: D8.

11 In 2016, Amherst College announced that Lord Jeffery Amherst would no longer be used in any official capacity by the College and began a search for a new mascot. The school’s teams are now called the Amherst Mammoths. However, Lord Jeff references were not scrubbed from the College’s materials (https://www.amherst.edu/amherst-story/amherst-pride/mascot/faqs).

12 John Cerutti, 1988 Sportflics Baseball Card.

13 Bob Monahan, “N.E. Duo Prime Draft Bait,” Boston Globe, June 2, 1981: 51.

14 Cerutti, Players Publicity Questionnaire.

15 John Cerutti, 1988 Topps Baseball Card.

16 Peter Gammons, “Baseball,” Boston Globe, August 1, 1982: 1.

17 Larry Millson, “Jays’ Prospect Pursues Dream,” Globe and Mail, March 1, 1983: 48.

18 Peter Gammons, “The Call to Arms,” Boston Globe, March 30, 1984: 1.

19 John Cerutti, 1986 Donruss Baseball Card.

20 Bob Snyder, “Bad Teams Strain Jays’ Farm Tie,” Globe and Mail, September 11, 1984: S4.

21 Larry Millson, “Baines’ Shot Helps to Cut Jays’ Lead,” Globe and Mail, September 2, 1985: S1.

22 Tom Dakers, “Eighth Anniversary of John Cerutti’s Sudden Passing,” October 3, 2012, https://www.bluebirdbanter.com/2012/10/3/3450266/eighth-anniversary-of-john-ceruttis-sudden-passing (last accessed February 6, 2021).

23 Neil MacCarl, “Jays’ John Cerutti Has Memorable Week,” Globe and Mail, May 21, 1986: F3.

24 Damian Cox, “Jays Pitcher Glad to be On Losing Side of Historical Game,” Toronto Star, October 7, 1985: C4.

25 Wayne Parrish, “Shepherd Insists Changes Have Gone Unnoticed,” Toronto Star, April 3, 1986: H2.

26 MacCarl, “Jays’ John Cerutti Has Memorable Week.”

27 Garth Woolsey, “Blue Jays’ John Cerutti No Lefty Prototype,” Toronto Star, August 26, 1986: H3.

28 “Widmar Wants Cerutti to Improve His Delivery,” Toronto Star, June 19, 1986: D6.

29 Marty York, “Jays’ Cerutti Stops Brewers,” Globe and Mail, June 25, 1986: D1.

30 Larry Millson, “Blue Jay Cerutti Hoping to Extend Security,” Globe and Mail, February 13,1987: C14.

31 Millson

32 Marty York, “Myers Added to Jay Wounded,” Globe and Mail, January 15, 1988: D12.

33 Dave Perkins, “Cerutti Sneaks in an Early Workout,” Toronto Star, February 24, 1987: F3.

34 Peter Gammons, “To Know ‘Em is to Fear ‘Em,” Sports Illustrated, June 22, 1987.

35 Neil MacCarl, “Cerutti Wins 8th Straight,” Globe and Mail, August 15, 1987: D1.

36 Neil MacCarl, “Cerutti Still Wants to Be a Starter,” Globe and Mail, February 25, 1988: C8.

37 Marty York, “Cerutti Opts for Ounce of Prevention,” Globe and Mail, November 11, 1987: D4.

38 York

39 Dave Perkins, “John Cerutti Signs ’88 Pact Worth ‘More Than $200,000’,” Toronto Star, February 28, 1988: G8.

40 MacCarl, “Cerutti Still Wants to Be a Starter.”

41 Larry Millson, “Inactivity Frustrates Cerutti,” Globe and Mail, August 24, 1988: A16.

42 Neil MacCarl, “Cerutti May Get His Wish to Be Starter,” Globe and Mail, December 13, 1988: C4.

43 Marty York, “Cerutti Could Ignite Southpaw Minefield,” Globe and Mail, January 12, 1989: A18.

44 The retractable roof at Montreal’s Olympic Stadium was first installed in 1987 but not actually raised until June 10, 1988. It was opened and closed 88 times, but never during a game – the operation took 45 minutes at best and could not take place amid high winds.

45 Larry Millson, “Cerutti Hurls Two-Hit Shutout at Royals,” Globe and Mail, August 3, 1989: A16.

46 Larry Millson, “It’s an Open and Shut Case for Jays’ Cerutti,” Globe and Mail, June 8, 1989: A25.

47 Larry Milson, “Cerutti Throws a Curve at Twins,” Globe and Mail, September 4, 1989: C4.

48 Larry Millson, “Cerutti, Lee Avoid Arbitration, Sign One-Year Deals,” Globe and Mail, February 12, 1990: C3.

49 Neil A. Campbell, “Cerutti Penned In,” Globe and Mail, August 15, 1990: C12.

50 Allan Ryan, “Starter’s a Mystery Man but It Won’t Be Candelaria,” Toronto Star, August 27, 1990: D4.

51 “Blue Jays Granted John Cerutti’s Wish,” Edmonton Journal, December 30, 1990: E2.

52 Reid Creager, “Tigers,” The Sporting News, December 23, 1991: 30.

53 Sean McAdam, “Cerutti, Bolton Play King of the Mound,” Providence Journal, March 27, 1992: B2.

54 Paul Kenyon, “Sloppy PawSox Bow to Barons,” Providence Journal, July 14, 1992: C4.

55 Marty Noble, “Tight Shoulder Sidelines Sid,” Newsday, March 21, 1993: 16.

56 Jeff Babineau, “Young and Old Begin Open Quest,” Orlando Sentinel, June 1, 1997: C13.

57 Dave Theall, “Cerutti Rallies for Elusive CGAC Win,” St. Peterburg Times, October 11, 2000: 19.

58 Ken McKee, “Ex-Jay Cerutti Behind Mike for Season Opener,” Toronto Star, March 28, 1997: C8.

59 Tim Wharnsby, “Cerutti Found Dead in His Room,” Globe and Mail, October 4, 2004: S1.

60 “John Cerutti,” http://www.blogofdeath.com/2004/10/10/john-cerutti/ (last accessed April 9, 2021).

61 “John J. Cerutti,” https://www.legacy.com/us/obituaries/timesunion-albany/name/john-cerutti-obituary?pid=2675813 (last accessed February 16, 2021).

62 Allan Ryan, “Cerutti’s Death Shocks Jays,” Toronto Star, October 4, 2004: C2.

63 “Cerutti, Cheek Honored,” Daily Press (Timmins, Ontario), March 3, 2006: B3.

64 “The John Cerutti Sportsman Award,” http://www.nysbhof.com/awards.html (last accessed April 9, 2021).

Full Name

John Joseph Cerutti

Born

April 28, 1960 at Albany, NY (USA)

Died

October 3, 2004 at Toronto, ON (CAN)

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