Tom Baker (bowler)
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|Born||September 12, 1954|
|Wins||10 PBA Tour
12 PBA50 Tour
Tom Baker (born September 12, 1954, Buffalo, New York) is a professional bowler on the PBA Tour and a member of the PBA Hall of Fame. He has won 10 titles on the regular PBA Tour (including one major), and 12 more on the PBA50 Tour (formerly PBA Senior Tour). He currently resides in King, North Carolina.
Baker had his best pro season in 1981, winning three titles and over $103,000 that season. By 1986, he had won 7 PBA titles before going on a 10-year winless streak, partially due to recurring wrist injuries. In 1996, he returned to the winner's circle at the AC-Delco Classic, and won again in 1997 in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. After another 7-year drought, he shocked the bowling world by winning the 2004 PBA World Championship at age 49. At the time, Baker was the oldest player to win a PBA major, though that mark has now been surpassed by Walter Ray Williams Jr. and Pete Weber, both of whom won majors at age 50. The event was held in an arena setting in Ypsilanti, Michigan, and paid a first prize of $120,000 – more than Baker had ever won in an entire season previously.
Baker has been a standout on the PBA50 Tour since joining in 2005, winning four PBA50 major titles and eight PBA50 standard tournaments, while continuing to compete on the regular tour through 2009. His 12 total PBA50 titles are tied for second all-time. Baker was named Senior Rookie of the Year and Senior Player of the Year in 2005, becoming the only senior player to earn both honors in a single season. He won Senior Player of the Year honors again in 2006 and 2007, an unprecedented streak in the history of the PBA Senior Tour.
Baker also owns 14 PBA Regional titles and 19 PBA50 Regional titles.
In the 2008-09 season, Baker was the oldest player in the "exempt" field on the Lumber Liquidators PBA Tour. He earned an exemption through that season with his 2004 World Championship victory, but generally split his time between regular and senior tour events. He did not qualify nor attempt to regain his exemption for the 2009-10 regular tour.
Baker was ranked #42 on the PBA's 2008 list of "50 Greatest Players of the Last 50 Years."
- Inducted into the PBA Hall of Fame in 1999 and the USBC Hall of Fame in 2012.
- Voted into the Greater Buffalo Sports Hall of Fame in 1999.
- Won the Steve Nagy Sportsmanship Award in the 1980 and 1981 seasons.
- Has earned over $1.9 million as a PBA professional (over $1.45 million on the regular PBA tour)
- Has rolled 65 career perfect 300 games in PBA competition. Was part of a 300-300 match play tie with Pete Weber in 1981.
- Holds the record for most events bowled on the PBA Tour in a career, with 831.
- Has a daughter named Miranda Baker, and she currently remains with her mother in Raleigh, North Carolina.
www.pba.com, official site of the Professional Bowlers Association and the Lumber Liquidators PBA Tour
- "Tom Baker PBA50 Bio". PBA.com. Retrieved July 13, 2017.
- "Baker wins PBA World Championship". The Oakland Press. March 22, 2004. Retrieved July 18, 2017.
- Manzione, Gianmarc. "Husted, Monacelli, Baker, Davidson elected to USBC Hall of Fame." Article at www.bowl.com on January 2, 2012. 
- Vint, Bill. "Dave Soutar Closes 2011 Senior Tour Season with Record 250 Appearances." Article at www.pba.com on August 31, 2011.