Monday, December 30, 2013

no. 246 - tony taylor

Who is the man: Thirteen years into his career, Tony Taylor hit above .300 for the first time in 1970. But he'd be traded by the Phillies to the Tigers in June of 1971 for a couple of minor leaguers.

Can ya dig it: A bit of an odd pose there. Taylor appears to be rearing back to throw, which you don't normally see from a non-pitcher on a card. It's also a little odd that it's next to the batting cage.

Right on: Let's break down the "infield" designation on Taylor's card. He played 59 games at second in 1970, 38 games at third and one at shortstop. He also played in the outfield 18 times.

You see this cat Taylor is a bad mother: Taylor, although he played for 19 years, is probably best known for his diving play at second base that robbed the Mets' Jesse Gonder of a hit and preserved Jim Bunning's perfect game in 1964.

Shut your mouth: Taylor played for the Phillies for 15 seasons, but he cried when he learned that he was traded from the Cubs to the Phillies in 1960. "I was angry, hurt," Taylor told the Allentown Morning-Call. "I was playing day games next to the great Ernie Banks. I did not want to go to this strange place -- Philadelphia."

No one understands him but his woman: As of 1998, Taylor had hit the most career home runs for a player who never hit as many as 10 in a season. The most he hit was nine in 1970 and he finished with 75 for his career.

(A word about the back): Taylor held the Phillies' record for most career games played at second base until Chase Utley broke it.


  1. Making a Perfect Game saving play...that is pretty bad ass. How far behind am I on commenting on all of these? About 200? I'm a sad excuse for a commenter.

  2. Taylor returned to the Phillies in '75 and '76, and became an excellent pinch-hitter.

  3. Taylor's pose is like Luis Tiant's pitching delivery.

  4. To put Taylor's "I did not want to go to this strange place -- Philadelphia" remark in context, Taylor was originally from Cuba -- which you might not guess from his name -- and may not have been familiar with many cities in the U.S. at the time aside from Chicago. His full first name is Antonio. I don't know how someone with the last name Taylor ended up in Cuba, but he must have had a male in his lineage who immigrated to Cuba from an English-speaking country, probably one of the islands in the West Indies that are/were British possessions. His mother's maiden name (used in Spanish-speaking countries as part of a person's full name) was Sanchez.