November 8, 1967 |
San Diego, California
|July 28, 1989, for the Houston Astros|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 27, 1997, for the Los Angeles Dodgers|
|Runs batted in||269|
Drafted by the Houston Astros in the 34th round of the 1986 MLB amateur draft, Anthony would make his Major League Baseball debut with the Houston Astros on July 28, 1989, and appear in his final game on September 27, 1997.
In 1986, Anthony was an 18-year-old Sharpstown High School dropout working on an assembly line at a Houston plastics company. He talked his way into an Astros tryout in 1986 and impressed scouts with his power, stunning them during batting practice by hitting a series of home runs that landed well beyond 400 feet from home plate. Subsequently, he was drafted by the Astros in the 34th round of the 1986 MLB amateur draft.
In the minor leagues, he tore through Single-A and Double-A pitching, building his reputation for prodigious home runs. His feast or famine plate approach had him averaging 30 home runs per season (along with an alarming 120 strikeouts per year). In 1989, Anthony led all minor-leaguers with 31 home runs and was the Southern League Most Valuable Player for the Columbus Mudcats. In desperate need of power-hitters, with only first baseman Glenn Davis hitting more than 13 home runs for the team that season, the Astros took a gamble and called Anthony up to the majors from Double-A in late July 1989.
Anthony's first major league hit came in his second game as an Astro. The home run, a 414-foot shot off the San Francisco Giants' Rick Reuschel, easily cleared the Astrodome fences. Later that game, he just missed another home run on an opposite-field shot that caromed off the top of the wall for a double.
The following season, Anthony electrified fans in the Astrodome in a game against the Chicago Cubs by launching a home run into the right field upper deck—the first Astro ever to put a home run there and the first player to do so since 1970. The pitch traveled an estimated 440 feet and the seat where the ball landed was commemorated with a star. For his first three seasons in the big leagues, Anthony shuttled between Triple-A Tucson and Houston, dominating minor-league pitching but never managing to hit over .200 at the MLB level.
Anthony's best season in the majors came in 1992, when he became a starter in the Astros outfield and slugged 19 home runs along with 80 RBIs. He followed that with a 15 HR, 66 RBI performance in 1993, and although he improved his batting average 10 points to .249 that season, he was dealt to the Seattle Mariners in the offseason for young lefthanded pitcher Mike Hampton. It would prove to be one of the best trades in Astros history, as Anthony would become a bench player over the last few years of his career while Hampton became one of the franchise's best pitchers.
Anthony would play as a reserve outfielder for the Mariners, Reds, Rockies, and Dodgers over the next several seasons, playing his final major league game for Los Angeles in 1997.
Anthony played the 1998 season for the Japanese League Yakult Swallows in 1998. After his time in Japan, Anthony returned to the Dodgers organization, playing for AAA Albuquerque in both 1998 and 1999. Although he hit well (over .300 both seasons), injuries prevented him from receiving another major league call-up. Anthony played four games for Somerset in the independent leagues in 2000 and seven games for Monterrey in the Mexican League in 2001 before retiring.