John Scott (scottjo01)
John Henry Scott
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 2", Weight 165 lb.
- High School Centennial High School
- Debut September 7, 1974
- Final Game September 27, 1977
- Born January 24, 1952 in Jackson, MS USA
John Scott played 13 years in professional baseball, winning two Diamond Glove Awards in Japan. He was known primarily for his speed. He was the #2 overall pick in the January 1970 amateur draft, taken by the San Diego Padres.
1970-1971: A ball
He debuted with the Tri-City Padres that year, hitting .270/~.354/.400 and tying for the Northwest League with five sacrifice flies. In 1971, he had a big year with Tri-City, batting .349/~.412/.510. He led the NWL in at-bats (312) and hits (109), tied Bob Davis for the lead in total bases (159) and tied for the lead in triples (7). He was third in average and stole 20 in 26 tries. He made the league All-Star team in the outfield along with Dane Iorg and Allan Wise. He also briefly was with the Lodi Padres that season, hitting .324/~.370/.338 in 24 games.
1972-1976: AA through the majors with San Diego
Scott debuted at AA at age 20, batting .256/~.317/.409 with 13 home runs and 26 steals in 32 tries for the Alexandria Aces, placing him third in the Texas League in stolen bases. In 1973, Scott returned to Alexandria and produced at a .295/~.338/.395 clip with only 5 home runs and 17 SB in 25 attempts. His 15 assists were third among TL outfielders and he finished 9th in average.
In 1974, John was in AAA, hitting .273/~.324/.392 for the Hawaii Islanders. He stole 28 in 34 attempts and scored 93 runs. Only Dave Moates stole more bases in the Pacific Coast League that year. Scott was a September call-up to San Diego and went just 1 for 15 in 14 games for the 1974 Padres. He appeared 7 times as a pinch-runner, 4 times as a defensive substitute and only 3 times as a starter.
Scott started the year with the 1975 Padres but did not get a start, pinch-running 15 times (scoring six and going 2 for 2 in steals), pinch-hitting 9 times (going hitless) and playing one game as a defensive sub. He then was sent back to AA Alexandria, batting .268/~.300/.368 in 61 games and stealing only 15 in 23 tries.
Scott had a strong rebound year in 1976 with Hawaii. He batted .315/~.362/.466 with 15 home runs, 83 runs, 82 RBI and 38 steals in 45 tries. His 14 errors led PCL outfielders. The Coast League was in its high-scoring era, but it was a solid season nonetheless. He did not get a call-up to San Diego. That winter, he was sold to the expansion Toronto Blue Jays.
1977: On an expansion club
In his last and only extended look at the majors, Scott played 79 games for the 1977 Blue Jays, hitting .240/.266/.305 for a poor 55 OPS+ and he only stole 10 bases in 18 tries. His career MLB batting line was only .222/.245/.280 in 271 plate appearances.
1978: Running Redbird
After the season, he was the player to be named later in a deal that sent him and Pete Vuckovich to the St. Louis Cardinals. He was assigned to the Springfield Redbirds and had a good year, batting .281/~.333/.406, scoring 84 runs and stealing 50 bases in 62 tries. He was second to Lonnie Smith in stolen bases in the American Association. St. Louis traded him to the Chicago White Sox for Jim Willoughby but he never played for the Pale Hose.
In 1979, John moved to the Yakult Swallows and hit .272/.320/.509. He only was 19 for 30 in steals but he crushed 28 home runs and drove in 81. In one doubleheader, he hit 4 home runs and from May 23 through May 28, homered 8 times for a Nippon Pro Baseball record for a five-day period. He won his first Diamond Glove Award that year. Overall, it was possibly his best year, which would be no surprise as many players peak at age 27.
Scott made his only Central League All-Star team in 1980 and won another Diamond Glove. He produced at a .267/.315/.441 clip with 16 homers and stole 20, but was caught 13 times. John's decline continued the next year, as he only hit .213/.254/.346 in 44 games for the 1981 Swallows. Overall, he had hit .262/.310/.458 in Japan.
Moving on to the Mexican League, the former Padres prospect continued to fade, going just 5 for 31 with no extra-base hits or walks and one steal in eight games for the 1982 Campeche Pirates to conclude his career.