Tuck Turner

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Tuck Turner
Tuck Turner.jpg
Outfielder
Born: (1866-02-13)February 13, 1866
New Brighton, New York
Died: July 16, 1945(1945-07-16) (aged 72)
Staten Island, New York
Batted: Both Threw: Left
MLB debut
August 18, 1893 for the Philadelphia Phillies
Last MLB appearance
June 10, 1898 for the St. Louis Browns
Career statistics
Batting average .320
Runs scored 298
Runs batted in 215
Teams
Career highlights and awards
  • Finished second in 1894 with a batting average of .416, the ninth highest batting average of all time

George A. "Tuck" Turner (February 13, 1866 – July 16, 1945) was a 19th-century Major League Baseball player for the Philadelphia Phillies and St. Louis Browns.

Career[edit]

Born in West New Brighton, New York, "Tuck" broke into the National League with the Philadelphia Phillies in 1893 at the age of 20. In reality he was 26, being born in 1866, but as was a common practice in baseball at the time, Turner told everyone he was younger than he really was. In 1894, Turner was part of one of the great hitting outfields in baseball history with Billy Hamilton, Sam Thompson, Ed Delahanty, and Turner all hitting over .400 for the year. Turner finished second that season with a .418 batting average to Hugh Duffy, who also happened to set the single-season batting average record of .440. For those Phillies teams though, a pennant wasn't to be as the late 1890s were the peak of the powerful Original Baltimore Orioles and Boston Beaneaters.

Turner's best seasons were 1894 and 1895, with Tuck leading the league in hitting with a .411 batting average through August 1895.[1] By the tail end of 1895 and the beginning of 1896, Turner had lost his batting touch and so was traded to St. Louis for Duff Cooley. According to accounts in the defunct sports journal, The Sporting Life, Turner contracted malaria with recurrent attacks in 1897 and 1898. This is in response to what happened to cause this promising major leaguer to suddenly lose his touch with the bat.[2][3]

On October 3, 1897 while playing for St. Louis, Turner accomplished a rare feat by hitting an inside-the-park grand slam. Turner's .418 batting average in 1894 is ninth all-time for single-season MLB batting average and also the highest in a single season for a switch hitter.[4]

Before reaching the majors, Turner was a paid player in the Buffalo Amateur Baseball League of the Amateur Athletic Union.[5] From 1899 to 1901, Turner played with the Hartford Indians in the Eastern League, replacing legendary Louis Sockalexis in the field his first season. Turner's post-majors career included stops in the Western League, Connecticut League and New England League.[6][7]

Turner grew up in West New Brighton with Jack Taylor, a solid pitcher for the Phillies in the mid-1890s, Jack Sharrott, George Sharrott and Jack Cronin. All would go on to careers in the National League.

Turner was inducted into the Staten Island Sports Hall Of Fame in 2011. His award was accepted for him by his grandson, Richard Turner.[8]

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "BASEBALL NOTES". The Washington Post. 08-01-1995.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  2. ^ "ST. LOUIS SIFTINGS". The Sporting Life, Philadelphia. 1897. 
  3. ^ "NEWS AND COMMENT". The Sporting Life, Philadelphia. 1898. 
  4. ^ "Biographical Information". Baseball Reference Bullpen. 
  5. ^ "CHAT FOR THE SPORTSMEN". The New York Times. 1998-01-30. 
  6. ^ "THE NATIONAL GAME". The Hartford Courant. 1999-06-19. 
  7. ^ "Daily Mail And Empire-Jun 9, 1900". 06-09-00.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  8. ^ "Staten Island Sports Hall of Fame salutes Class of 2011". silive.com. 2011-01-03. Retrieved 2014-01-25.