September 30 – Happy Birthday Rusty Torres

Their dynasty had already crumbled by the time the Yankees drafted today’s Pinstripe Birthday Celebrant in the 54th round of the 1966 amateur draft. Rusty Torres was born in Puerto Rico but grew up in Queens, where he starred in baseball as a high school and sandlot player. It took him five plus seasons to work his way up the Yankee ladder of farm teams, but when he hit 19 home runs and averaged .290 for the Triple A Syracuse Chiefs in 1971, Ralph Houk decided to give the switch-hitting youngster an opportunity to become New York’s starting right-fielder, alongside Bobby Murcer and Roy White.

Torres proved not up to the task. He got into 80 games during the 1972 season but hit a putrid .211 with just 3 home runs and 13 RBIs in 199 at bats. That November, the Yankees sent Torres, Charley Spikes, Johnny Ellis and Jerry Kenney to Cleveland to obtain third baseman, Graig Nettles.

Even though his lifetime average was just .212, Torres defensive skills as an outfielder helped him last nine seasons in the Majors. His only year as a starter was 1976, when he was the Angels’ everyday center fielder.

Torres shares his September 30th birthday with this long-ago Yankee starting pitcher.

Year Tm G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS
1971 NYY 9 26 26 5 10 3 0 2 3 0 0 8 .385 .385 .731 1.115
1972 NYY 80 219 199 15 42 7 0 3 13 0 18 44 .211 .280 .291 .571
9 Yrs 654 1523 1314 159 279 45 5 35 126 13 164 246 .212 .301 .334 .635
CAL (2 yrs) 178 399 341 46 66 17 4 9 37 4 46 57 .194 .288 .346 .634
CLE (2 yrs) 230 545 462 50 92 10 1 10 40 8 63 86 .199 .296 .290 .586
NYY (2 yrs) 89 245 225 20 52 10 0 5 16 0 18 52 .231 .291 .342 .633
CHW (2 yrs) 106 254 214 33 57 8 0 11 30 0 29 44 .266 .359 .458 .817
KCR (1 yr) 51 80 72 10 12 0 0 0 3 1 8 7 .167 .250 .167 .417
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 9/30/2013.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: