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Toby Hall

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Toby Jason Hall

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[edit] Biographical Information

Toby Hall spent nine seasons as a catcher in the minor leagues and also won the International League MVP Award.

[edit] 1997-2000: Early career

He was picked by the San Francisco Giants in the 24th round of the 1995 amateur draft but did not sign. He was selected by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in the 9th round of the 1997 amateur draft and made his pro debut that summer with the Hudson Valley Renegades, where he hit .250/~.296/.280 in 55 games. He spent the next year with the Charleston RiverDogs, hitting .321/~.385/.440 and making the South Atlantic League All-Star team. He was 4th in the SAL in average. Hall split 1999 between the St. Petersburg Devil Rays (.297/~.349/.425, only 9 strikeouts in 212 AB) and the Orlando Rays (.254/~.271/.451) and hit 9 homers with the latter club.

Hall split the 2000 season between Orlando (.343/.378/.494 in 68 games) and the Durham Bulls (.304/.314/.500 in 47 games) before joining Tampa Bay as a September call-up, going 2 for 12 with a homer in four games.

[edit] 2001: The dream year

Returning to Durham, Toby lit up the International League in 2001. He hit .335/.385/.568 with 19 homers and 72 RBI in 94 games while only striking out 22 times in 373 AB. Hitting third for the IL in the AAA All-Star Game, he went 0 for 2 with a run. In the 2001 Futures Game, he went 2 for 3 with a steal and a home run, winning MVP honors as the USA won, 5-1. He was among the IL's top 3 in the all three Triple Crown stats when Tampa Bay called him up on July 26th. Hall wound up leading the IL in average and also led all Devil Rays farmhands in that category. He was named to the IL All-Star team at catcher and won the MVP award. Baseball America rated him the #2 prospect in the IL behind Adam Dunn.

With the 2001 Devil Rays, Hall hit .298/.321/.447 for a 103 OPS+; he would never match that level of production over a full season for the rest of his career.

[edit] 2002-2008: In the majors

He was the Devil Rays' starting catcher by 2002. He was a regular with the club for four and a half seasons, posting an OPS+ between 76 and 83 every year as a reliable player.

After a slow start in 2006, he was dealt with Mark Hendrickson and cash to the Los Angeles Dodgers for Dioner Navarro and Jae Weong Seo. Hall hit a fine .368/.383/.439 in 21 games for the 2006 Dodgers.

In December of that year, he signed a two-year contract with the Chicago White Sox. In 2007, he hit .207 in 38 games as the primary backup to A.J. Pierzynski, then in 2008, he hit .260 in 41 games in what was his last season in the major leagues.

[edit] Family ties

Hall's brother, shortstop Todd Hall, was drafted by the White Sox in 1993 and played one year in their organization.

[edit] Trivia

According to one source (2004 Topps #159), Hall puts the ball in play over 80% of the time. He collected base hits in 6 consecutive at bats in April, 2003.

[edit] Notable Achievements

[edit] Related Sites

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