The position player representative from the 1992 Philadelphia Phillies for this ‘Phillies 50’ series of 1971-2019 random players is another who perfectly fits the definition.
Outfielder Julio Peguero was 23-years-old that year when he appeared in the only 14 games of his career in Major League Baseball. He played nine games in center field and five games in right field that season.
Originally signed by the Pittsburgh Pirates as a teenager out of the Dominican Republic, Peguero came to the Phillies in a waiver deadline trade on August 30, 1990. In that deal the Phillies also received Wes Chamberlain and a player to be named (later became Tony Longmire) in exchange for veteran outfielder Carmelo Martinez.
After spending the entire 1991 season with Triple-A Scranton-Wilkes Barre, Peguero actually made the Phillies roster out of spring training and went north with the club for Opening Day at Veterans Stadium.
On April 8, 1992 at The Vet, manager Jim Fregosi brought Peguero in to play center field in the top of the 8th inning with the Phillies leading the visiting Chicago Cubs by an 11-3 score. Peguero replaced right fielder Dale Murphy in the batting order, with Ruben Amaro Jr sliding over from center to right field.
With two outs in the bottom of the 8th inning, Peguero stepped into a big-league batter’s box for the very first time. It didn’t go well as Cubs’ reliever Paul Assenmacher struck him out swinging on four pitches.
10 days later on April 18, 1992, Peguero got his first start in a game at Three Rivers Stadium against his old organization. The host Pittsburgh Pirates romped the Phillies by a 9-2 score that Saturday afternoon thanks in part to Barry Bonds‘ fifth homer of the season.
For Peguero, it was still a memorable day as he registered the first two hits of his big-league career. The first of those came in the top of the 3rd inning when he grounded a clean single to center field off Pirates’ starter Zane Smith.
Peguero would appear in eight April games, making a pair of starts. Sent back to Triple-A, he would be promoted once again in late May for a 10-day stint in which he appeared in another half-dozen contests but received no more starting opportunities.
On June 3, 1992 during a 4-1 victory over the host Braves at Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium behind a strong seven-inning effort from starter Curt Schilling and a save from closer Mitch Williams, Peguero made his final career MLB appearance as a 9th inning defensive replacement in right field.
In late July 1992 the Phillies traded Peguero away as the player to be named in an earlier deal to the Los Angeles Dodgers. He finished out the year with their Triple-A Albuquerque club, then moved on to spend all of 1993 at Double-A in the Cleveland Indians organization.
From 1994-96, Peguero played in the Seattle Mariners organization at three different levels including 111 games with Triple-A Tacoma. But he was still never able to break through for another big-league opportunity.
At age 28 in 1997, Peguero opted to play in the Mexican League. He would appear there through the 2000 season, playing with four different clubs before finally deciding to retire at age 31.