Tom Foley (infielder)

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Tom Foley
Tom Foley 2011.jpg
Foley in 2011.
Tampa Bay Rays – No. 6
Utility infielder/Coach
Born: (1959-09-09) September 9, 1959 (age 55)
Ft. Benning, Georgia
Batted: Left Threw: Right
MLB debut
April 9, 1983 for the Cincinnati Reds
Last MLB appearance
July 13, 1995 for the Montreal Expos
Career statistics
Batting average .244
Home runs 32
RBI 263
Teams
Career highlights and awards

Thomas Michael Foley (born September 9, 1959 in Ft. Benning, Georgia) is a retired Major League baseball player. During his playing career, he was a shortstop for the Cincinnati Reds, Philadelphia Phillies, Pittsburgh Pirates and Montreal Expos. He currently serves as the bench coach for the Tampa Bay Rays.

Early Years[edit]

Foley was born in Fort Benning, Georgia. His father was in the U.S. Army so he moved a lot in his childhood. When he was growing up he lived in France, Hawaii, and Japan for four years.

He graduated from Palmetto High School in Miami, where he played both football and baseball. He played as shortstop in baseball and quarterback in football. He also played basketball.

After high school he moved on to Dade South Community College until the Cincinnati Reds in the 7th round of the 1977 amateur draft drafted him.

Playing Career[edit]

Foley’s first major league debut was on April 9,1983 at the age of 23. His first game he had a walk and a 2 run double in the first inning before he even got to play in the field.

During the 1985 season, he was traded to the Philadelphia Phillies along with 2 other of his own Reds players for 2 Phillies players. He was supposed to be a starter with the Phillies in the late 1985 to 1986 season until he fractured his wrist. It got fractured when he got hit by a pitch in a spring training game.

He then got traded in 1986 from the Phillies to Montreal. His first game in Montreal he got to play his former team the Reds in a back to back match up. As a Montreal player he had his best season ever in the majors. This was in 1987 and his batting average was .293 in 106 games. He played as shortstop during this season.

His 1988 season he was able to establish his career highs as a player and played in 127 games, had 100 hits and 43 RBIs. He was also considered to be Montreal’s most consistent infielder. During his 1990 season with Montreal he for the first time played all four infield positions.

In 1993 he signed as a free agent with the Pittsburgh Pirates. It was there he played in over 145 games within 2 seasons. After the 2 seasons he returned to Montreal where he completed his major league career. He completed his 12 year Major League career in 1995 where he played his last game against his old team the Phillies.

He played as a shortstop, second baseman, and third baseman for majority of his career. But he also was able to pitch one game in his 1989 season. He bats on his left but throws on the right. He believes he wasn’t a great player, but because he could play in every infield position that is what made him a good fielder. He says that he tried to mix his fielding skills to try and make up for some hits as well.

Foley played in 13 seasons in the Major League. All 13 of these seasons were played in the National League. As shortstop, his main position, he played 463 games. He also played 61 games as a first baseman, 385 as a second baseman, and 90 as third baseman. He was also able to play one game as an outfielder and pitcher. When asked what stood out to him about his 13 seasons in the majors, he responded “probably just making it to the major leagues”. He said this because he did sign right out of high school and now he is in his 32nd year in the majors.

Coaching Career[edit]

His coaching career started in 1996, after his retirement as a player. He started as the Tampa Bay Rays field coordinator and was the one to oversee the first mini camp in club history. This followed the Rays first June draft for the team.

During the summer of 1996 he managed at Butte, Montreal in Canada where the Rays had their Rookie level in the Pioneer league. There he led the team to a 37-35 record and after that season he was the league’s Manager of the Year award.

Through the 1999 season he was a field coordinator and then became the director of the minor league operations for the next 2 years. After those 2 years he managed an Arizona Fall League by the name of the Maryvale Saguaros. The Maryvale Saguaros are now known as the Surprise Saguaros. He managed them in the 2001 Fall season.

Foley signed back on with the Tampa Bay Rays on October 25, 2001, where he still is today. He is the longest tenured coach in the club’s history. Since being the third base coach, he has served under three managers, those being Hal McRae, Lou Piniella and Joe Maddon. As the Rays third base coach he has waived home 74 percent of the runs that the Rays have scored in the history as a ball club. To put into numbers, that is 8,106 runs of the 10,903 runs scored.

In an interview, when asked what goes into his job as a third base coach that is outside the baseline he responded “I’m the infield coach, so I’ll position our infielders during the course of a game”. He then goes on in saying that there are meetings that he puts on with the other coaching staff, and he basically works with all of the infielders and positions them before and also during the game.

There is only one person that has lasted longer than Foley in all of the MLB, and that is Jose Oquendo who is now in his 13th season as a coach.

Personal Life[edit]

Tom Foley married Marta Wright on August 28, 1981 and they have 3 children together. Their names are Bryan, Brett and Brooke. His son Brett works within the Rays organization with his father. He is an area supervisor scout and his territory for the Rays are in the states of Iowa, Illinois Minnesota and Wisconsin.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Terry Collins
Tampa Bay Devil Rays/
Tampa Bay Rays
third base coach

2002–2014
Succeeded by
Charlie Montoyo
Preceded by
Dave Martinez
Tampa Bay Rays bench coach
2015
Succeeded by
Incumbent