John Martin Kruk is a former professional baseball first baseman and outfielder from the United States. Kruk played for the San Diego Padres, Philadelphia Phillies, and Chicago White Sox in Major League Baseball (MLB) from 1986 to 1995. He was a three-time MLB All-Star throughout his career. After retiring as a player, Kruk became an ESPN baseball commentator. He currently works as a color commentator for NBC Sports Philadelphia's Phillies games.
On February 9, 1961, John Kruk was born in Charleston, West Virginia. He spent most of his childhood growing up in Keyser. He attended Keyser High School before going on to play baseball at Potomac State College. He then attended Allegany Community College and became the first graduate from Allegany Community College to play Major League Baseball. In 1988, he was inducted into the Potomac State College Athletic Hall of Fame.
Following his graduation from Alleghany College in 1981, John Kruk pursued his professional career as a baseball player. He started his career with the San Diego Padres. Although he was drafted in 1981, it wasn't until 1986 that Kruk made his debut. His big break came in 1987 when he hit .313 with 20 home runs and 91 RBIs. It was this game that helped him secure the position of a backup on the All-Star Team.
In 1989, the Philadelphia Phillies traded him. He was named to three consecutive National League All-Star teams in 1991, 1992, and 1993. In 1994, Kruk discovered that he had testicular cancer. At the end of that season, he entered free agency and then joined the Chicago White Sox of the American League.
John Kruk abruptly retired in 1995 after he hit a single in a game against the Orioles at Camden Yards Stadium. However, he retired with impressive statistics and a batting average of 300. He also became one of five players to finish his career with exactly 100 home runs.
He became a writer when he published a book titled I Ain't an Athlete, Lady in 1994. He then pursued a broadcasting career, joining Major League Baseball on Fox and doing several local telecasts around Philadelphia. In 2004, he started working as an analyst for ESPN on the show Baseball Tonight and wrote a column on ESPN.com called Chewing the Fat. He has also worked in movies and television shows, including The Fan, American Pastime, and Aqua Teen Hunger Force. In 2011, Kruk was inducted into the Philadelphia Baseball Wall of Fame.
John Kruk got married to Jamie Heeter in the year 1991, but the marriage ended in divorce. He then remarried in the year 2000 to Melissa McLoughlin.
In October 1987, Kruk rented a property in San Diego with two other men: a high school buddy, Roy Plummer, and a friend of Plummer's, Vernon (Jay) Hafer. Plummer often paid when they went out to eat or party. Additionally, Plummer supported the group's lifestyle by moonlighting as an armed robber, with Hafer acting as his getaway driver, unbeknownst to Kruk. In November, Kruk moved out to play winter ball in Mexico. During spring training in February 1988, the FBI approached Kruk with a photograph of Plummer taken during a bank robbery, warning him of his roommates' illegal actions. According to the FBI, Plummer felt Kruk had betrayed him, and Kruk feared retaliation until Plummer was captured on September 19, 1988. Kruk stated that the continued tension from the incident had a severe impact on his on-field performance that season.
|Birth Date:||9 Feb, 1961|
|Citizenship:||United States of America|
|Description:||American baseball player|
|Net Worth 2021:||4 million|