Tony Phillips

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Tony Phillips
Outfielder / Infielder
Born: (1959-04-25) April 25, 1959 (age 55)
Atlanta, Georgia
Batted: Switch Threw: Right
MLB debut
May 10, 1982 for the Oakland Athletics
Last MLB appearance
August 15, 1999 for the Oakland Athletics
Career statistics
Batting average .266
Home runs 160
Runs batted in 819
Teams
Career highlights and awards

Keith Anthony Phillips (born April 25, 1959 in Atlanta, Georgia) is a former Major League Baseball utility player who had an 18-year career from 1982 to 1999. He played regularly at three infield positions, primarily as a second baseman, but also had significant time as a shortstop and third baseman. He also played in over 100 games as a left fielder, right fielder, and designated hitter.

Early life[edit]

Phillips played baseball and other sports for the Roswell High School Hornets in Roswell, Georgia, He played basketball in a brief year at New Mexico Military Institute (With team mate and former NBA player Louis Lloyd). He is related to former University of Georgia and current Tampa Bay Buccaneers football player Jermaine Phillips.[citation needed]

Major league baseball career[edit]

On March 27, 1981, Phillips was traded from the Padres along with 3B Kevin Bell and P Eric Mustad to the Athletics for P John Lacey and P Roy Meretti. Phillips became the first Athletics player to hit for the cycle going 5-5 against the Orioles on May 16, 1986. Phillips also tied the American League records for most assists in a game (12) on July 6, 1986 vs. the Brewers. In 1988, he had a poor year, hitting just .203 over 203 at bats, and the A's lost to the Los Angeles Dodgers in the World Series. However, in 1989 he boosted his average to .262 and the A's swept the San Francisco Giants to win the World Series.

Phillips left Oakland after 1989 to join the Detroit Tigers. His offensive production surged with Detroit: he became proficient at drawing walks, leading the American League in 1993 with 132 after posting 114 in 1992. His 114 runs scored in 1992 were a league best, and he followed that up with 113 runs scored in 1993. His 1993 season was recognized with a 16th place finish in the MVP vote. Also, his 1993 season was unique in that he became the first (and so far only) player to ever have 100 or more of hits, walks, runs, and strikeouts in a season where the player hit less than 10 homers.

After hitting 19 home runs and drawing another 95 walks in 1994, Phillips was traded to the California Angels in April 1995, with the season yet to start due to the 1994-1995 strike. He set a career-best mark that year with 27 homers, but drove in just 61 runs due to batting lead-off, and walked 113 times.

1996 saw Phillips move on to the Chicago White Sox, with whom he drew 125 walks, most in the league, and scored 119 runs for the second year in a row. Phillips returned to the Angels via a trade partway through the 1997 season and drew 102 walks, his third year in a row and fifth year out of six with over 100. In 1998 he played with the Toronto Blue Jays and the New York Mets, and then signed on with the A's for his final season in 1999.

Yuma Scorpions[edit]

Phillips played third base for the Yuma Scorpions of the independent North American League until the team folded in 2012. He played alongside with former Athletics teammate Jose Canseco.[1] In August 2011, 52-year-old Phillips was involved in an altercation with former Scorpions manager Mike Marshall, then with the Chico Outlaws. Phillips punched Marshall in the face during the incident, causing the latter to press battery charges against the infielder.[2]

Cocaine arrest[edit]

On August 10, 1997, Phillips was arrested in Anaheim and charged with buying a small quantity of free-base cocaine.[3] He had been found by police in a hotel room with $30 worth of cocaine and a pipe used to smoke it.[4]

Phillips pleaded guilty to one count of felony cocaine possession, with the charge subject to dismissal if he completed drug counseling and then stayed drug-free for a year. As Phillips met those conditions, the charge was dismissed by an Orange County, California judge in May 1999.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Another forfeit in the NAL - this time in Chico | News". Ballparkdigest.com. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  2. ^ Gleeman, Aaron (Aug 12, 2011). "Former big leaguers Tony Phillips and Mike Marshall fight as Jose Canseco manages". Hardball Talk. NBC Sports. Retrieved 13 August 2011. 
  3. ^ http://www.deseretnews.com/article/576642/Phillips-looks-to-return-to-lineup-following-cocaine-arrest.html
  4. ^ Shaikin, Bill (May 4, 1999). "Judge Clears Former Angel". Los Angeles Times. 
  5. ^ Shaikin, Bill (May 4, 1999). "Judge Clears Former Angel". Los Angeles Times. 

External links[edit]