SUGAR LAND, Texas (KTRK) -- Deacon Jones, a former hitting coach for the Houston Astros and a Sugar Land Space Cowboys special assistant, has died. He was 89.
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Jones started his baseball career with the Chicago White Sox organization, working his way through the minor league ranks until making his Major League Baseball debut on Sept. 8, 1962.
From 1976 to 1982, he worked as the Astros' hitting coach, and from 1984 to 1987, he was the hitting coach for the San Diego Padres. He would eventually become an advanced scout with the White Sox, a position he held from 1988 until 2008.
Sugar Land Space Cowboys General Manager Tyler Stamm described Jones' impact with the club known as the Skeeters.
"Deacon was an invaluable part of our organization and a close friend to every member of the Sugar Land front office and community. We've lost a pillar of our organization and a dear friend who is wholly responsible for all of us being here. Without Deacon Jones, there would be no Sugar Land franchise," Stamm said.
Jones spent his time constantly looking around in Fort Bend and nearby Houston areas to see whether fans had visited the ballpark.
Jones' No. 4 jersey was recognized by Sugar Land as the first jersey retired by the franchise on Aug. 4, 2019. Plans for a memorial to remember Deacon's life and legacy are in progress.