Antonio Nemesio Taylor Sanchez
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 5' 9", Weight 179 lb.
- Debut April 15, 1958
- Final Game September 29, 1976
- Born December 19, 1935 in Central Alava, Cuba
- Died July 16, 2020 in Hialeah, FL USA
Tony Taylor, who played nineteen years in the major leagues, was an immensely popular player in Philadelphia, and spent most of his career as a member of the Philadelphia Phillies.
Although he won no Gold Gloves, Tony was a decent enough fielder who showed good range in his younger years at second base, and while he was not a great hitter, he usually had a respectable batting average along with some stolen bases. On June 21, 1964, he made a spectacular diving play to save Jim Bunning's perfect game against the New York Mets at Shea Stadium. His best year with the bat was 1970, at age 34, when he posted a line of .301/.374/.462 (the team hit .238). He had six separate years where he stole at least 20 bases.
Taylor was born in Cuba the same year as Pedro Ramos and grew up on a sugar plantation. He signed with the New York Giants around the age of 18, and came up to the majors originally with the 1958 Chicago Cubs, where he was the regular second baseman and double play partner of Ernie Banks, who won the MVP award that year. Tony stayed with the Cubs for two years and part of a third before being traded to the Phillies in 1960. He stayed with the Phillies through all of the 1960s until the middle of 1971, when he was traded to the Detroit Tigers. He helped the Tigers win a division title in 1972 when he hit .303. After the 1973 season he returned to the Phillies to close his career from 1974 to 1976 as a pinch hitter and backup infielder. Prior to every plate appearance, Taylor always crossed himself.
With 2,195 lifetime games, Tony ranks high on the list of major leaguers who played the most games without ever appearing in a World Series. Taylor and his teammate, Johnny Callison, are believed to have been the first players to have been the victims of six no-hitters. These were all against the Phillies between 1960 and 1969. Bert Campaneris tied this apparent record in 1977. His 15 seasons with the Phillies are the third most in franchise history; he was also the franchise's all-time leader for games played at second base until passed by Chase Utley.
He worked for the Phillies as a minor league manager during the 1980s, managing the Spartanburg Traders and later the Oklahoma City 89ers in 1982, the Peninsula Pilots in 1983, the Reading Phillies in 1985, and the Utica Blue Sox in 1986 and 1987. He was a coach for the Shreveport Captains in 1990-1991 and Phoenix Firebirds in 1992.
He was a major league coach for the Phillies from 1977 to 1979 and again in 1988 and 1989. He was later a major league coach for the Florida Marlins from 1999 to 2004. In 2002, Tony was inducted into the Philadelphia Baseball Wall of Fame.
His first baseball card appearance was in the 1958 Topps set. He passed away in July 2020 at age 84 from complications from a stroke he had suffered the previous August following an appearance at a Phillies alumni event at Citizens Bank Park.
- NL All-Star (1960)
- 100 Runs Scored Seasons: 1 (1963)
Year-By-Year Minor League Managerial Record
|1982||Spartanburg Traders||South Atlantic League||36-36||--||Philadelphia Phillies||replaced by P.J. Carey on June 23|
|Oklahoma City 89ers||American Association||23-44||8th||Philadelphia Phillies||replaced Ron Clark (20-46) and|
Cot Deal (0-1) on June 23
|1983||Peninsula Pilots||Carolina League||58-80||7th||Philadelphia Phillies|
|1985||Reading Phillies||Eastern League||58-79||8th||Philadelphia Phillies|
|1986||Utica Blue Sox||New York-Penn League||26-52||12th||Philadelphia Phillies|
|1987||Utica Blue Sox||New York-Penn League||31-43||10th||Philadelphia Phillies|
- Rory Costello and José Ramírez: "Tony Taylor", in Mel Marmer and Bill Nowlin, eds.: The Year of Blue Snow: The 1964 Philadelphia Phillies, SABR, Phoenix, AZ, 2013, pp. 217-225. ISBN 978-1-933599-51-9