Teolindo Acosta

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Teolindo Acosta
Outfielder
Born: (1937-07-23)July 23, 1937
Maracaibo, Zulia, Venezuela
Died: August 2, 2004(2004-08-02) (aged 67)
Valencia, Carabobo, Venezuela
Batted: Left Threw: Left
Teams
Career highlights and awards
  • Two-time Venezuelan league batting champion (1957–1958),(1965-1966)
  • Three-time Mexican league batting champion (1969),(1971),(1974)
  • Two Caribbean Series appearances (1960, 1972)
  • Venezuelan Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum induction (2006)
This name uses Spanish naming customs: the first or paternal family name is Acosta and the second or maternal family name is Lázaro.

Teolindo Antonio Acosta Lázaro (July 23, 1937 — August 2, 2004) was a Venezuelan professional baseball player. Listed at 5' 7", 168 lb., he batted and threw left handed.[1]

Acosta was a distinguished batter in his homeland. As a result, many people called him, in friendly way, as El Loquito que Inventó el Hit (the tiny crazy who invented the hit).[2]

His skills were showed in his motherland with the Aguilas del Zulia, Cardenales de Lara, Industriales de Valencia, Licoreros de Pampero, Llaneros de Acarigua and Tigres de Araguaof the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League. Besides, Acosta played nine seasons in the Mexican League for the Leones de Yucatán, Pericos de Puebla, Tecolotes de Nuevo Laredo and Cardenales de Villahermosa, now known as Olmecas de Tabasco .

Along his prolific career of 23 years, Acosta won five batting crowns, two of them in his motherland and the rest of them in México.

Professional career[edit]

Early years[edit]

Acosta broke into minor league baseball with the Class-D Dothan Cardinals of the Alabama-Florida League in 1958, batting .313 with 76 RBI and a league-leading 36 stolen bases in 124 games. For whatever reason, the parent Cincinnati Reds assigned him to Dothan for a second season in 1959, and he responded by bopping out a .337 average and again led the circuit with 46 steals. Sufficiently impressed, the Reds moved Acosta up to the Billings Mustangs of the Class C Pioneer League the next season, where he topped the loop with a .369 average (the first of his five pro batting crowns) and 45 swipes. He leapfrogged over B ball in 1961 to play for Class A Columbia Reds of the South Atlantic League, and once more was best in the league in batting (.343) and steals (40), marking his fourth consecutive stolen base titles.

Venezuela League (1956–1979)[edit]

Teolindo Acosta belong to a selected list of baseball players in Venezuela, who are in the top of several offensive departments; Acosta is the third in the list of most games played (1130); third in plate appearances (4324); he is fourth in Run scored (604); also he is third in hits (1289); additionally, is in the second place in Triples (56) and fourth in stolen bases (121). Along his long career of twenty three years in the Venezuelan winter league, Acosta won two batting titles.

Mexico League (1968–1976)[edit]

Acosta was one of the top batters in Mexican baseball for nine seasons between 1968 and 1976, winning three batting titles in a six-year span. Never a power hitter, the 5’6” 158-pound outfielder was a contact hitter who rarely struck out and sprayed the ball all over the field, similar in fashion to Rod Carew.

He cooled off a bit over the next few seasons, batting between .269 and 294 from 1962 through 1966, and after only hitting .238 for Buffalo of the International League over 49 games in 1967, he moved south to Mexico for the 1968 campaign with Puebla.

Acosta found his footing in the Mexican League, bettering .320 his first eight seasons. He hit .325 for the Pericos in 1968, followed by a Liga batting crown with a .354 average in 1969. Despite that, he moved on to Yucatán in 1970. After hitting .337 that season (including one game in which he went 6-for-6 with six runs), he was the top hitter in Mexico in 1971 with a career-high .392 BA and followed up with a solid .346 season in 1972. Acosta returned to Puebla during his .375 campaign in 1973, and won his fifth and final batting championship in 1974 with a .366 showing. After hitting .320 for Villahermosa in 1975, he wrapped up his career as a 39-year-old with Nuevo Laredo in 1976 by batting .276, his only sub-.300 season in nine Mexican League campaigns.

The left-handed Acosta carried a lifetime .328 average in 19 seasons of professional baseball, collecting 2,724 hits with 64 homers and 389 stolen bases. He did even better in Mexico, knocking out a .345 batting average (sixth-best lifetime in the Liga) with 132 stolen bases. He led all of professional baseball in batting in 1971 and 1974. Despite these figures, he is not a member of Mexican baseball’s Salon de la Fama.

Career statistics[edit]

Note: Some statistics are incomplete because there are no records available.
Bold denotes category leader.

Batting[edit]

Season Team League GP AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BA SLG Ref
1956–1957 Licoreros de Pampero LVBP 21 42 12 10 0 1 0 3 0 .238 .286 [3]
1957–1958 Licoreros de Pampero LVBP 38 148 35 57 4 2 1 11 3 .385 .459 [3]
1958–1959 Licoreros de Pampero LVBP 45 188 30 63 9 4 0 15 7 .335 .426 [3]
1959–1960 Industriales de Valencia LVBP 29 106 16 31 2 1 0 10 5 .292 .330 [3]
1960–1961 Industriales de Valencia LVBP 46 172 27 47 1 0 0 11 8 .273 .279 [3]
1961–1962 Industriales de Valencia LVBP 49 198 30 65 5 1 2 18 5 .328 .394 [3]
1962–1963 Industriales de Valencia LVBP 39 169 32 54 7 6 0 12 8 .320 .432 [3]
1963–1964 Industriales de Valencia LVBP 45 174 24 48 4 4 0 20 13 .276 .345 [3]
1964–1965 Industriales de Valencia LVBP 48 195 29 63 7 1 0 11 6 .323 .369 [3]
1965–1966 Industriales de Valencia LVBP 55 221 34 77 8 1 0 14 8 .348 .394 [3]
1966–1967 Industriales de Valencia LVBP 59 229 29 66 6 2 0 15 5 .288 .332 [3]
1967–1968 Industriales de Valencia LVBP 46 182 26 51 6 2 0 3 4 .280 .335 [3]
1968 Pericos de Puebla LMB 99 354 53 115 16 6 4 39 15 .325 .438 [4]
1968–1969 Llaneros de Acarigua LVBP 59 230 27 73 7 2 0 14 13 .317 .365 [3]
1969 Pericos de Puebla LMB 142 534 87 189 29 9 6 82 18 .354 .476 [4]
1969–1970 Aguilas del Zulia LVBP 52 192 20 46 6 1 0 5 4 .240 .281 [3]
1970 Leones de Yucatán LMB 140 469 76 158 26 14 3 55 14 .337 .471 [4]
1970–1971 Aguilas del Zulia LVBP 21 68 8 21 2 1 0 2 0 .309 .368 [3]
1970–1971 Tigres de Aragua LVBP 35 139 22 49 7 5 1 19 4 .353 .496 [3]
1971 Leones de Yucatán LMB 133 441 75 173 22 11 7 71 17 .392 .540 [4]
1971–1972 Tigres de Aragua LVBP 60 242 31 68 6 4 0 17 5 .281 .339 [3]
1972 Leones de Yucatán LMB 134 492 77 170 25 11 4 51 11 .346 .465 [4]
1972–1973 Tigres de Aragua LVBP 60 251 37 74 7 5 0 14 6 .295 .363 [3]
1973 Leones de Yucatán LMB 121 419 64 157 17 8 9 66 11 .375 .518 [4]
1973–1974 Tigres de Aragua LVBP 59 225 40 82 6 6 1 27 0 .364 .458 [3]
1974 Pericos de Puebla LMB 122 464 93 170 17 6 2 43 20 .366 .442 [4]
1974–1975 Tigres de Aragua LVBPL 57 213 17 50 3 0 0 15 0 .235 .249 [3]
1975 Villahermosa LMB 109 416 43 133 9 8 0 30 19 .320 .380 [5]
1975–1976 Tigres de Aragua LVBP 59 231 24 65 5 4 0 15 3 .281 .338 [3]
1976 Tecolotes de Nuevo Laredo LMB 101 384 48 106 5 0 0 19 7 .276 .289 [4]
1976–1977 Tigres de Aragua LVBP 41 126 8 24 0 1 0 10 5 .190 .206 [3]
1977–1978 Cardenales de Lara LVBP 63 237 39 67 5 2 0 27 7 .283 .321 [3]
1978–1979 Cardenales de Lara LVBP 44 146 7 38 3 0 0 10 2 .260 .281 [3]

The Sunset of Warrior[edit]

Acosta, basically was sharing his time as active baseball player between México and Venezuela, and after 23 seasons, he decided to hung up his spikes in 1979 while he was playing with Cardenales de Lara in the Venezuelan winter league. Acosta retired with a lifetime .298 average, and five batting crowns in his pocket, two batting titles he won in Venezuela and the rest of them in México.

After retiring from winter ball in 1979, Acosta settled down in Valencia where died from heart problems on August 2, 2004 at 67.

Honors and Acknowledgments[edit]

In 2006 Acosta received the honor of induction into the Venezuelan Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.[1]

Sources[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Venezuelan Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum – Teolindo Acosta Biography".  (Spanish)
  2. ^ Gutiérrez, Daniel; Alvarez, Efraim; Gutiérrez (h), Daniel (2006). La Enciclopedia del Béisbol en Venezuela. LVBP, Caracas. ISBN 980-6996-02-X
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x Purapelota.com Teolindo Acosta LVBP Statistics
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h Estadiscaslmb.com Teolindo Acosta LMB Statistics
  5. ^ "Baseball Reference MiLB – Teolindo Acosta statistics". 
  • Treto Cisneros, Pedro (2002). The Mexican League/La Liga Mexicana: Comprehensive Player Statistics, 1937-2001. McFarland & Company. ISBN 978-0-78-641378-2
  • "Mexican Baseball Stars" by John Phillips
  • Nuñez, José Antero (1994). Serie del Caribe de la Habana a Puerto La Cruz. JAN Editor. ISBN 980-07-2389-7
  • Gutiérrez, Daniel; Alvarez, Efraim; Gutiérrez (h), Daniel (1997). La Enciclopedia del Béisbol en Venezuela.
  • Gutiérrez, Daniel; Alvarez, Efraim; Gutiérrez (h), Daniel (2006). La Enciclopedia del Béisbol en Venezuela. LVBP, Caracas. ISBN 980-6996-02-X

External links[edit]