Phil Huffman

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Phil Huffman
Pitcher
Born: (1958-06-20) June 20, 1958 (age 56)
Freeport, Texas
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
April 10, 1979 for the Toronto Blue Jays
Last MLB appearance
October 3, 1985 for the Baltimore Orioles
Career statistics
Win–loss record 6-18
Earned run average 6.03
Strikeouts 58
Teams

Phillip Lee Huffman (born June 20, 1958 in Freeport, Texas), is a former professional baseball pitcher. He played two seasons in Major League Baseball, for the Toronto Blue Jays in 1979 and for the Baltimore Orioles in 1985.

Early life and education[edit]

Huffman played high school baseball in Texas for Brazoswood High School near his native Lake Jackson, Texas.[1]

Baseball career[edit]

Huffman was drafted out of high school in Texas in June 1977 by the San Francisco Giants as the team's second-round draft pick.[1] In 1977, Huffman made 10 starts for the Great Falls Voyagers in the Pioneer Baseball League, a Class A rookie league, going 7-3.[1]

On March 15, 1978, Huffman was part of a massive trade that sent him to the Oakland Athletics, along with Dave Heaverlo, Gary Alexander, John Henry Johnson, Gary Thomasson, Alan Wirth, $300,000 (and Mario Guerrero, who was named later), in exchange for Vida Blue.[2]

Huffman began the 1978 season pitching with the Jersey City A's in the Eastern League AA league. Partway through the 1978 season, he was promoted to San Francisco's AAA Vancouver Canadians minor-league club.[1]

On August 15, 1978, Oakland traded Huffman and Willie Horton to the Toronto Blue Jays in exchange for Rico Carty.[1] He was subsequently transferred to the Blue Jays' AAA Syracuse Chiefs farm club.

1979 season[edit]

Huffman made the Blue Jays' big-league roster in 1979 and remained with the team for the entire season. Overall, the season was a disappointment, as he went 6-18. He made 31 starts, posted a 5.77 earned-run average and gave up 25 home runs.

On August 27, 1979, Huffman pitched what easily was his best game in his major-league career, tossing a one-hitter against the Oakland Athletics in Toronto. Huffman posted his first win at Exhibition Stadium after six losses. Huffman retired the first 11 hitters, faced only 30 batters in total, and gave up the lone hit to Jim Essian in the sixth inning.[3] He also walked Mike Heath and Mario Guerrero. The win was Huffman's final victory as a major league pitcher. "It's always great to beat a club you played with," Huffman said after the game. "I know all those guys over there. As for thinking of a no-hitter, I wasn't necessarily doing that. It's tough to pitch a no-hitter. I'm happy I got the shutout and only gave up one hit."[3]

In 1980, Huffman was set to start the season with Toronto, but was optioned to the team's AAA farm club in Syracuse after manager Bobby Mattick chose to go with a four-man rotation.[4] "Phil has added a changeup to his pitching and he's been one of our top workers," Mattick told the Globe and Mail in April 1980. "But we want him to get a lot of work and he'll get it at Syracuse."[4] Huffman never ended up joining the major-league staff during the 1980 season, however.

Huffman remained in the Blue Jays' system in 1981 as well, going 5-9 with a 5.69 earned run average while at Syracuse.[5]

After Toronto[edit]

On March 25, 1982, the Blue Jays traded Huffman to the Kansas City Royals for Rance Mulliniks.[2] Huffman was assigned to the Royals' AAA Omaha Royals minor-league farm club, where he spent the entire season. On April 2, 1983, the Royals released Huffman.[2]

On May 24, 1983, Huffman signed as a free agent with the New York Mets. He pitched for the team's Tidewater Tides AAA farm club during 1983 and 1984. On July 13, 1984, the Baltimore Orioles purchased Huffman's contract from the Mets, and he finished out the season at Baltimore's Charlotte O's AA farm club.

1985 season[edit]

In 1985, Huffman began the season with Baltimore's Rochester Red Wings AAA farm club. On July 10, 1985, Huffman was called up to the majors to fill the roster spot vacated by injured reliever Nate Snell. At the time, Huffman was 6-7 with Rochester.[6] Huffman only appeared in two games—one on July 13, 1985 against the Chicago White Sox (in which he gave up four earned runs in one-third of an inning pitched)[7] -- in his first stint with Baltimore that year before being sent back to the minors. He then was recalled at the end of the season and pitched in just one more game, starting the October 3, 1985 second game of a doubleheader against the Boston Red Sox, being pulled from the game in the fifth inning after giving up an RBI single to future Hall of Famer Wade Boggs.[8] For his 1985 major-league season, Huffman went 0-0 and posted a 15.43 earned run average in two games, pitching four and 2/3 innings, giving up seven hits, eight earned runs and striking out two.[9]

Later career[edit]

On June 26, 1987, Rochester released Huffman after he went 5-6 with a 4.78 earned run average.[10] "Phil is one of the older, veteran pitchers," Rochester manager John Hart was quoted as telling the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. "He would be a stabilizing factor on the ballclub, but we just didn't feel at this time Phil would help us out at the big-league level."[10]

After his release from Rochester, Huffman joined the Minnesota Twins' Portland Beavers AAA farm club for the balance of 1987, posting a 1-2 record with a 9.37 earned run average in nine games.[11] After 1987, Huffman stopped playing organized baseball.

Today[edit]

Huffman now[when?] lives in Rochester, New York and is the supervisor for a welding supply company that distributes high-pressured liquid oxygen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide and flammable gas.[12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Patton, Paul (August 16, 1978). "Jays deal Carty for Horton and Huffman". Globe and Mail. p. D3. 
  2. ^ a b c "Phil Huffman Statistics and History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2013-09-15. 
  3. ^ a b Golla, James (August 28, 1979). "Huffman handcuffs A's with a one-hitter". Globe and Mail. p. D3. 
  4. ^ a b Golla, James (April 7, 1980). "Layoff worries Jays' boss Missing pitchers may lack sharpness". Globe and Mail. 
  5. ^ United Press International. October 6, 1981. 
  6. ^ . Associated Press. July 10, 1985.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  7. ^ "Box Score of Game played on Saturday, July 13, 1985 at Memorial Stadium". Baseball-almanac.com. 1985-07-13. Retrieved 2013-09-15. 
  8. ^ Beard, Gordon (October 3, 1985). "Red Sox 6-8, Orioles 2-9". Associated Press. 
  9. ^ "Phil Huffman Statistics and History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2013-09-15. 
  10. ^ a b Vecchio, Valerie (June 27, 1987). "No Red Wings' Pitcher Safe As Orioles Shake Up Staffs". Syracuse Post-Standard. 
  11. ^ "Phil Huffman Baseball Statistics (1977-1987)". Thebaseballcube.com. 1958-06-20. Retrieved 2013-09-15. 
  12. ^ Elliott, Bob (May 4, 2002). "Huffman can relate". Toronto Sun. p. S13. 

External links[edit]