Jose Lima died of a heart attack at 37 yesterday. He was the rarest of Astro birds in the Drayton McLane era -- someone who actually had personality.
Lima pissed off a lot of fans and opponents with his antics, and he famously lost whatever mojo he had with the move to Enron Field.
Bu the twitterverse lit up with his death, and former teammates also chimed in with remembrances. A sampling:
-- I was 12, waiting outside for autographs. He looks at my ball, sees Bagwell already signed it. "You actually got Bagwell? Waht do you want me for?"
-- I've never really gotten upset when other athletes die but #limatime has me all bummed out. Feel like I knew him.
-- Lima carded me and my buddies at a Stros game in late 90's. We sat near the bullpen, didn't think we were old enough 2 drink.
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-- Sad Jose Lima passed so young. Saw him at a stop light once he was had the windows down having a good time. He enjoyed life to the fullest.
--Brad Ausmus, former teammate in Detroit and Houston:
"I just found that out in the elevator, it was awful, just shocking. I didn't talk to him this time, usually when he is here I do talk to him and say Hello. ... First year I played with him was in '96. We got traded together to Houston in '98 we were there. He might've been in Houston again. High energy, always in a good mood, loved to sing. We had to listen to his demo tape all the time in the locker room. Now, it's a fond memory, back then it was annoying."
Alex Cora, who played with Lima in LA:
"He was a very happy person, very upbeat, really enjoyed the game, he brought a really great vibe to the clubhouse. Especially in '04, I had a blast playing with him. We play this game for a living, but you have to enjoy it, and he did, he actually did."
Be sure to check out John Granato and Lance Zierlein this morning on 1560 The Game -- they are the unofficial keepers of the Limas flame here on local sports-talk radio, and are sure to have some good stuff in memory of the man.