C.J. Cron taken by Angels - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Sports

C.J. Cron taken by Angels

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Posted: Monday, June 6, 2011 4:22 pm | Updated: 5:09 pm, Thu Jul 14, 2011.

Twenty-seven years after finding out that he was drafted by telegram, Chris Cron watched in sheer amazement Monday as his son, C.J., was selected by the Los Angeles Angels instantly.

"When I saw the Angels (emblem) on TV I told my buddy this is the team that I really wanted him to go to," the proud father said a few minutes after watching MLB Commissioner Bud Selig announce it live on television.

"With all of the people I know in that organization and as good of an organization it is, it is a great situation."

When C.J. Cron, a Mountain Pointe product and University of Utah junior, had his name picked by the Angels as the 17th overall pick in the first round, The BAR Fitness, where the family held a draft party, went berserk.

"It really hasn't settled in yet," C.J. Cron said. "I just heard my name and everyone went crazy."

The 6-foot-4, 235-pounder is a slugging first-baseman that took off his sophomore year at Utah after getting rid of a leg kick and dropping his hands in his stance.

He feels the change was the impetus to this day happening, but there seems to be a bit of fate involved when zooming out and looking at the big picture.

Chris, who was selected in the second round in 1982 by Atlanta but made his major league debut with the Angels, is a Double-A manager for the Detroit Tigers organization and the team just happen to have the day off on Monday so he flew in and surprised the family by making it home, showing up while they were having lunch with Chris' mother, Connie, at Sweet Tomatoes.

Throw in the fact that C.J., 21, was taken by the team that his dad made his major league debut with and one that just happens to train in Arizona and plays its regular season games within driving distance, and there might not have been a better fit.

Coincidence, fate or dumb luck it just doesn't matter to Linda Cron.

"What a great day for the family and he gets to have spring training here," said the proud mother. "We are just elated and so very happy that we will be able to see him a lot."

The only thing that would have made the day more special - and unique - was if Cron's brother, Kevin, was selected in the first round as well matching the Drew brothers, J.D. and Tim, who pulled off the feat in 1997.

"No one is happier for him than me," said Kevin, who will go sometime early in day two of the draft and is a Texas Christian commit. "We have some brother rivalry but none of it matters today. Today is his day. Mine will probably come (Tuesday) and that is fine."

C.J.'s development has been rapid considering he was taken in the 44th round (1,320th overall) in 2008 by the Chicago White Sox coming out of Mountain Pointe when he hit .421 with eight home runs and 35 RBIs.

"I wasn't an attractive pick to scouts back then," said Cron, whose father was coaching in the White Sox organization in 2008. "I knew I had some work to do. Then after my sophomore year (at Utah) people were talking about me being a first-round pick and I just wanted to live up to it."

After hitting .337 with 19 doubles, 11 home runs and 58 RBIs as a freshman for Utah to be named a second-team freshman All-American, Cron improved to .431 with 20 home runs and 81 RBIs as a sophomore to be named an All-American.

It all came together when he made the adjustments at the plate.

"We butted heads because we are exactly alike and I wanted him to make that change four years earlier," Chris joked. "But he couldn't do it until he believed it himself. Once he called me and told he me he was thinking about doing it I knew he'd become a different player."

Cron followed it up with a junior year that kept him on the first-round radar when he hit .434 with 15 home runs and 59 RBIs.

"I just can't wait to get that chance to go out and play professionally," C.J. said. "I've been around it along time because of my Dad and now I am about to get that opportunity as well. It's amazing."

Cron stands to become a millionaire once he signs.

He represented by former major league pitcher Scott Sanderson, who will probably use last year's 17th overall pick - Josh Sale of Tampa Bay and his $1.62 million dollar signing bonus - as a comparison even though Sale was a high school outfielder with a college commitment to Gonzaga.

No matter how it plays out, Cron wasn't concerned with all of his family and friends hanging out at the BAR.

"I don't care about it and I am not even thinking (about the money)," he said. "I'll let my representation take care of that and hopefully it wraps up pretty quickly."


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