Jim Fregosi, 71, was baseball-lifer

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Former major league manager Jim Fregosi, who spent 53 seasons in professional baseball, died early Friday from complications after suffering multiple strokes, the  Atlanta Braves confirmed.

Jim Fregosi Jr., the oldest son of the 71-year-old Fregosi, told MLB.com his father died at 2:36 a.m. and "went in peace with no pain."

Fregosi managed 15 years in the majors with the Angels, White Sox, Phillies and Blue Jays, compiling a 1,028-1,094 record.

His 1993 Phillies produced a 97-65 record and won the National League pennant, and he guided the 1979 Angels to the AL West title with an 88-74 season.

"Everyone in the Phillies organization is deeply saddened about the news of Jim's passing. We, and so many others in the game, have lost a dear friend," Phillies president David Montgomery said in a statement. "He'll be remembered for his vibrant personality, wisdom and love of the game."

The six-time All-Star shortstop played played 18 seasons for the Angels, Mets, Rangers and Pirates. For his career, he had a .265 batting average with 151 home runs and 706 RBIs.

The Angels, who retired Fregosi's No. 11 in 1988, said in a statement Fregosi was a personal favorite of former owner Gene Autry.

"His contributions and passion for the Angels, both as a player and manager, have served as the standard for others within our organization through the years," the Angels said.

"Jim's induction into the Angels Hall of Fame and the retiring of his uniform No. 11, were among the prouder moments in club history. His personality was infectious, his love of the game legendary, and his knowledge endless."

Fregosi left the Angels in a 1971 trade with the Mets that sent Nolan Ryan to California.

Fregosi, who had been with the Braves for the past 13 seasons, was serving as a special assistant to general manager Frank Wren.

"We have lost a dear friend and a wonderful baseball man," Braves president Jon Schuerholz said Thursday in a statement. The Atlanta Braves will truly miss Jim and we send our deepest condolences to his wife, Joni, his entire family and all of his many friends throughout baseball."

Fregosi was removed from life support at a Miami hospital on Thursday, a family spokesman told MLB.com. 

"I'm sorry to say he did pass away," White Sox special assistant Dave Yoakum told ESPNNewYork.com's Adam Rubin on Friday. "I always knew when I walked into the ballpark and saw Jim sitting there I was going to learn something about baseball and have lots of laughs the next three to four days.

"Fishing with him, Lee Elia, Charlie Manuel and Dom Chiti are memories I will cherish for the rest my life. I'm going to miss Jim tremendously."

Fregosi, also a former scout, suffered a stroke while on a Major League Baseball alumni cruise and was hospitalized.

James Louis Fregosi was born in 1942 in San Francisco and starred in baseball, football basketball and track and field at Serra High School. He signed with the Boston Red Sox out of high school and went to the Angels in the 1960 expansion draft.

ESPN.com's Jayson Stark, ESPNNewYork.com's Adam Rubin and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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