Billy Hatcher

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For the video game, see Billy Hatcher and the Giant Egg.
Billy Hatcher
Billy Hatcher.jpg
Cincinnati Reds – No. 22
Outfielder / First Base Coach
Born: (1960-10-04) October 4, 1960 (age 54)
Williams, Arizona
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
September 10, 1984 for the Chicago Cubs
Last MLB appearance
May 9, 1995 for the Texas Rangers
Career statistics
Batting Average .263
Hits 1,146
Stolen Bases 218
Teams
Career highlights and awards
  • World Series champion (1990)
  • 1990 Babe Ruth Award
  • .750, Single-season World Series Batting Record (1990)
  • .800, Single-season World Series On-Base Percentage Record (1990)[1]

William Augustus Hatcher (born October 4, 1960) is a former left and center fielder in Major League Baseball player for the Chicago Cubs, Houston Astros, Pittsburgh Pirates, Cincinnati Reds, Boston Red Sox, Philadelphia Phillies and Texas Rangers, and former first base coach for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. Hatcher is currently first base coach for the Reds.

Pre-MLB career[edit]

In 1979, Hatcher graduated from Williams High School in Williams, Arizona, where he had pitched an 11-inning no-hitter as a junior. Hatcher then played for Yavapai Community College in Prescott, Arizona, where he was a junior college All-America selection.

Professional playing career[edit]

Hatcher was drafted by the Cubs in the sixth round of the January 1981 MLB draft. He rose quickly through the Cubs' minor league system, playing exactly one season at each minor league level before receiving a late-season call-up to the major league club in 1984. He split time between AAA and the Cubs during the 1985 season before being traded to the Astros along with Steve Engel for Jerry Mumphrey.

Hatcher would be the Astros' starting left fielder for the next 3½ seasons and is remembered by Astros fans for hitting one of the most dramatic post-season home runs ever in the 14th inning of Game 6 of the Astros' 1986 National League Championship Series vs the New York Mets' Jesse Orosco, temporarily saving the Astros from elimination.[2]

Hatcher had his best statistical season in 1987, when he opened the season with a 16-game hitting streak and led the Astros in hitting (.296) and had career highs in stolen bases (53, 3rd in the National League), home runs (11) and RBI (63). His most dubious achievement came that season as well, as he received a 10-game suspension for bat corking.[3] Hatcher later explained that he had borrowed the bat from relief pitcher Dave Smith.[4] Hatcher broke several of his own, uncorked bats in games leading up to the incident, and he continues to maintain his innocence.

Near the end of the 1989 season, the struggling Astros traded Hatcher to the Pirates for Glenn Wilson. He played just 27 games for Pittsburgh before being traded to the Reds for Jeff Richardson and Mike Roesler. Hatcher had a memorable season in 1990 for the Reds when he stole 30 bases during their closely contested 1990 pennant run. On August 21, 1990, he tied the major league record against the Cubs with four doubles in one game. He ended up leading National League outfielders in fielding percentage (.997) on the season.

The best hitting performance of Hatcher's career was timely, coming during the 1990 World Series against the Oakland Athletics. During the 1990 post-season he hit .519 overall (14-for-27), including a World Series record .750 in the four-game World Series sweep over the heavily favored A's. This mark broke a 62-year-old World Series record that was previously held by Babe Ruth (.625 in 1928). Hatcher also set records for most consecutive hits in a series (7) and most doubles in a four-game series (4). Despite his torrid hitting, Hatcher was not named the Series Most Valuable Player, that going to Reds pitcher José Rijo, who had a nearly perfect series of his own. Hatcher finished his career with a remarkable .404 postseason batting average in 14 games.

Hatcher was traded to the Red Sox for Tom Bolton in the middle of the 1992 season and, on August 3 of that season while with the Red Sox, stole home against the Toronto Blue Jays' Juan Guzmán. He was the Red Sox' starter in center field for the 1993 season before finishing his career as a reserve for the Phillies and Rangers before retiring following the 1995 season.

Overall, Hatcher played 12 seasons in the Major Leagues. He finished his career with a .264 career batting average in 1,233 games.

Coaching career[edit]

In 2014, Billy Hatcher enters his ninth season as a Major League coach with the Reds organization. He works as first-base, outfield, and baserunning coach.[5] Prior to joining the Reds, he spent ten seasons in the Tampa Bay Rays organization, first as a roving minor-league instructor (1996), then as a minor-league coach for 1997 Florida State League champion St. Petersburg. Hatcher spent the next eight seasons as a member of the Rays' Major League coaching staff (1998–2005) as the first-base coach (1998–99, 2003–05), bench coach (2001–02), and third-base coach (2000). He holds the distinction of being the only coach to work for the Rays in each of the club's first eight years of existence.

Personal[edit]

Hatcher's wife's name is Karen. Hatcher's son, Derek, was Florida's 2004 Class A Player of the Year in football at Berkley Prep in Tampa, Florida and then played safety for the University of Richmond football team that won the 2008 NCAA FCS National Championship. He also has a daughter, Chelsea, who played soccer at the University of Tennessee from 2008 to 2011.[6] She was selected to the All-SEC first team in 2010. [7]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "All-time and Single-Season World Series Batting Leaders". Retrieved January 19, 2014. 
  2. ^ "MLB's 20 Greatest Games". MLB. Retrieved 2011-11-26. 
  3. ^ Baseball Digest, May 2008, by Marky Billson http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0FCI/is_3_67/ai_n25147858
  4. ^ Marazzi, Rich (August 1999). "Baseball Rules Corner". Baseball Digest: 81. Retrieved April 21, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Team: Manager and Coaches". Reds.com. Retrieved April 21, 2011. 
  6. ^ http://www.utsports.com/sports/w-soccer/mtt/hatcher_chelsea00.html
  7. ^ http://www.utladyvols.com/sports/w-soccer/spec-rel/110210aaa.html

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Preceded by
position created
Tampa Bay Devil Rays First Base Coach
1998–1999
Succeeded by
Jose Cardenal
Preceded by
Greg Riddoch
Tampa Bay Devil Rays Third Base Coach
2000–2001
Succeeded by
Terry Collins
Preceded by
Bill Russell
Tampa Bay Devil Rays Bench Coach
2001–2002
Succeeded by
John McLaren
Preceded by
Lee May
Tampa Bay Devil Rays First Base Coach
2003–2005
Succeeded by
George Hendrick
Preceded by
Randy Whisler
Cincinnati Reds First Base Coach
2006–present
Succeeded by
incumbent