Tag Archives: Darren Daulton

Philography series to resume with Phillies retired number legends

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Phillies legends Schmidt, Carlton, Bunning to be covered as ‘Philography’ series resumes

It was just over four years ago that I first decided to write mini-biographies about famous Philadelphia Phillies figures of the past. The effort was largely for me. I have always enjoyed history and biographies of influential and famous figures from the past, not just sports-related.

While I knew the “baseball card” information on most of the players, I knew very little about their backgrounds. Where did they come from? What was the specific path leading them to Philadelphia?
If they played for another team, what achievements did they enjoy with that club? How did their career, and in some cases their lives, come to an end? Did they enjoy a post-baseball career?
Out of this natural curiosity on my part the “Philography” series was first born. I decided that I wanted to write about the playing careers, and touch on other aspects of the lives, of some of my own Phillies favorites of the past. The series would begin with a star player from my youth, “The Bull” himself, Greg Luzinski.
Over the next two months, I produced a new piece each week, picking from the team’s past in no specific pattern: Mitch WilliamsChris ShortVon HayesPlacido PolancoJim KonstantyDick AllenDick RuthvenGrover Cleveland “Pete” AlexanderDarren Daulton,
Paintings and memorabilia adorn the walls and fill the
halls on the Hall of Fame level at Citizens Bank Park

The Philography series was officially born. I then made the decision that this would become a regular off-season project, to write a handful of Phillies mini-bios each fall and winter.

In December 2015 a piece on Larry Bowa was produced, and we were off and running once again. A month later I reached back in time to produce a piece on Sherry Magee. Before spring training began for the 2016 season there would be installments on Kevin StockerGranny Hamner, and the only female to appear thus far, Edith Houghton.
The series returned in December of 2016 with a piece on Bob Boone, and I made a decision to push the series in a specific direction for the first time. That off-season, I would go after the Phillies all-time best catchers who hadn’t previously been covered. With Daulton and Boone in the books, the series continued with Wall of Famer Mike Lieberthal and old-timer Red Dooin.

And then the series was shelved. Last off-season saw a number of changes in my life, and most of my writing took a back seat for a while. I returned to regular baseball writing this summer upon joining the staff here at Phillies Nation. And now, the series will be making its return as well.
This off-season will see the continuation of “Philography” with some of the biggest names in franchise history. Over the next few weeks there will be pieces covering each of the five players who have had an actual uniform number retired by the Philadelphia Phillies due to their play with the team: Richie AshburnJim BunningMike SchmidtSteve Carlton, and Robin Roberts.
I hope that you enjoy these pieces, which it will be my goal to release each weekend beginning after Thanksgiving. If you are interested in catching up with the past “Philography” series installments, they can each be found at the following links.

Lenny Dykstra indicted by grand jury and faces possible return to prison

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In a decision related to actions allegedly taken by former Phillies star outfielder Lenny Dykstra back in May of this year, a New Jersey grand jury handed down indictments on Wednesday.
The Associated Press has reported that third-degree charges for possession of cocaine and methamphetamine, as well as terroristic threats, carry with them potential sentences of up to five years imprisonment.
The now 55-year-old Dykstra became involved in an altercation involving an Uber driver, one in which the former Mets and Phillies outfielder was accused of putting a gun to the driver’s head. That driver, 47-year-old Brian Lutty, had reportedly refused to change the final destination of the trip.
Lutty pulled outside of police headquarters in Linden, New Jersey, about 20 miles outside of New York City, and bolted from the car. Responding officers found no gun but did find drugs in Dykstra’s possession.
Dykstra claimed that Lutty had “kidnapped” him. Christian Red and Larry McShane of the New York Daily News quoted him back in May: “The guy went nuclear on me. He f—ing kidnapped me and almost killed me going 100 mph. He locked me in his f—ing car, and he wouldn’t let me out.”

David Porter of the AP outlined some of Dykstra’s many public troubles since he last played Major League Baseball following the 1996 season:

“Since retiring from baseball, Dykstra has served prison time for bankruptcy fraud, grand theft auto and money laundering, and he declared bankruptcy in 2009, claiming he owed more than $31 million and had only $50,000 in assets.”

According to the New York Times, in May of 1991 while driving home late at night after attending a bachelor party for teammate John Kruk, Dykstra wrapped his 1991 Mercedes-Benz around a pair of trees in Radnor, Pennsylvania. Fellow Phillies star Darren Daulton was a passenger in the vehicle.
Both were lucky to escape with their lives. That New York Times report stated: “Dykstra…suffered three broken ribs, a broken right collarbone and a broken right cheekbone. A broken rib punctured a lung and his heart was bruised, according to doctors. Daulton…suffered a broken left eye socket, a scratched left cornea and a heart bruise, doctors said.”
This time around, Dykstra obviously believes that there is more to the case than the public knows at this point. He seems to feel that he will ultimately be vindicated, based on this tweet sent on Thursday morning:
Dykstra, known during his career by the nicknames “The Dude” and “Nails”, had a 12-year career in MLB, the final eight of those with the Phillies.
In 1993, Dykstra was the runner-up in National League Most Valuable Player voting to Barry Bonds. That year, the Phillies center fielder hit for a .305/.420/.482 slash line with 19 homers, 66 RBI and 37 stolen bases.
He led the NL with 194 hits and 129 walks and led all of baseball with 143 runs scored that year as the Phillies captured the National League pennant. He was also a Silver Slugger Award winner in 1993, and a National League All-Star in both 1994 and 1995 with the Phillies.

Over the course of his eight Phillies seasons, Dykstra registered 829 of his career total 1,298 hits. He ranks 9th in on-base percentage, 16th in stolen bases, 24th in walks, 36th in runs scored, 37th in doubles, and 47th in hits on the Phillies all-time leader boards.
Dykstra is scheduled to be arraigned at a future date. Whether the case ultimately goes to trial or his lawyer is able to negotiate a plea deal that somehow saves him from more jail time, it appears that the man who earned more than $36 million dollars during his professional baseball career has not yet overcome his personal demons.

Originally published at Phillies Nation as “Dude! Former Phillies star Lenny Dykstra indicted for May 2018 incident, faces a possible return to prison

Remembering the 1993 NL champion Phillies in their silver anniversary season

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Daulton was the acknowledged clubhouse leader of the 1993 NL champions

The Philadelphia Phillies are officially feting the 2008 World Series championship team this weekend.

On the 10th anniversary of the historic season which concluded with that team winning the second title in franchise history, it is wholly understandable and appropriate.
However, there is another beloved Phillies team celebrating a big anniversary this year.
In fact, as someone who has been following the team closely since Veteran’s Stadium opened in 1971, I’ve always maintained that the other anniversary team provided the most fun single Phillies season that I ever experienced.
Sure, the 1980 and 2008 Phillies teams both won the World Series. I attended Game Two of the 1980 Fall Classic as an 18-year-old. I was at the parade celebrations for both championship teams.
I was inside JFK Stadium in October of 1980 when Tug McGraw told New York to “take this world championship and stick it!” I was videotaping at 15th & JFK and captured a fan making a memorable climb up a light pole on Halloween in 2008.
But for all the drama, excitement, and ultimate thrill that those two clubs provided, there was never a more fun Phillies season from start to (almost) finish for me than the one provided by the 1993 team.
It almost seems lost in all the excitement over the 10th anniversary of the 2008 club, but this is now the silver anniversary for the 1993 National League champion Philadelphia Phillies team.
Yes, it has been 25 years now since that mullet-wearing, scruffy-bearded, ‘Macho Row’-led crew stormed through baseball. In a March 2012 piece, Mike Bertha at Philadelphia Magazine summed up that unforgettable season perfectly:

“It began with a bench-clearing brawl at spring training. Then, over the course of 103 total wins, 49 extra innings, 12 playoff games and some late nights (or, more accurately, early mornings), the 1993 Phillies seduced the city. Fans spent the summer flocking to the Vet to watch their appropriately nicknamed “Animal House,” both captivated and agog as the Phillies stampeded through the National League and then marched through Atlanta to earn a date with the defending-champion Toronto Blue Jays in the World Series.”

The Darren Daulton Foundation operates today in the name of, and as a memorial to, the namesake captain of that Phillies team. The foundation provides financial assistance to those who suffer from brain cancer and brain tumors. On June 8, they held a reunion celebration for the 1993 team.
Our own Kevin McCormick here at Phillies Nation reported on the event and those in attendance back in June:

“…the pennant-winning team showed up for the event, including: Tommy Greene, Jim Eisenreich, Larry Bowa, Milt Thompson, Ben Rivera, Mickey Morandini, David West, Tony Longmire, Curt Schilling, and even Danny Jackson who arrived after throwing out the first pitch at the Phillies-Brewers game across the street. Fans in attendance got to meet the players, take pictures, get autographs, and chat with the guys throughout the night.”

Morandini, who shared second base duties with Mariano Duncan, eventually became a minor league manager and then a big league coach with the Phillies. He remains on the payroll as a popular club ambassador.
Five of the men who were in uniform and playing important roles that summer are no longer with us, including Daulton. The catcher and leader of that ball club died a year ago this coming Monday following a four-year battle with brain cancer.

Also now gone off to play on that “Field of Dreams” in the sky is their raspy-voiced manager Jim Fregosi, along with three members of his coaching staff: John VukovichJohnny Podres, and Mel Roberts.
Phillies fans still get plenty of first baseman John Kruk (TV) and reliever Larry Andersen (radio) as members of the current Phillies regular broadcasting crew. Andersen and Daulton hold the distinction of being the only players to appear with the Phillies during both the 1983 and 1993 pennant-winning seasons.
Greene was a member of the 1993 starting rotation, joining Schilling, Jackson, Rivera, and Terry Mulholland. He and shortstop Kevin Stocker can be found chipping in work as a broadcaster and analyst respectively at times.
Some of the more popular members of that hard-charging ball club have become embroiled in controversy over the years. Beginning with nine seasons in Phillies pinstripes, Schilling built a strong Hall of Fame résumé as he continued his career helping the Diamondbacks and Red Sox to World Series victories.
The MVP of the 1993 NLCS victory over Atlanta, Schilling’s shutout in Game Five of the World Series that year is one of the greatest post-season pitching performances in Phillies history. Some now find him controversial as an outspoken conservative political and social commentator.
Mitch Williams was a respected analyst with MLB Network before he was fired in 2014 after an altercation at a youth tournament. Williams filed a lawsuit and was ultimately awarded a $1.5 million judgement in June of last year.
Lenny Dykstra finished as runner-up to Barry Bonds in voting for the 1993 National League Most Valuable Player. ‘The Dude’ or ‘Nails’ as he was alternately known blasted dramatic home runs in both the NLCS and World Series that year.
Over the ensuing decades, the now 55-year-old Dykstra has fallen the farthest and hardest. In May of this year came his latest incident, arrested in New Jersey after allegedly pointing a weapon at an Uber driver and threatening to blow the driver’s head off. Cocaine, marijuana, and ecstasy were found on him by responding police.
Some members of that 1993 team are already immortalized by the organization. Bowa, previously honored in 1991 for his role as a player, would be joined by Vukovich (2007), Daulton (2010), Kruk (2011), and Schilling (2013) on the Phillies Wall of Fame.
It was a completely unexpected, fun summer filled with wild, walk-off wins, some in the wee hours of the morning. Numerous seemingly unlikely heroes stepping up to deliver pivotal hits or make clutch plays at crucial moments. A wild band of misfit characters playing the parts and winning the hearts of Phillies fans for decades to come.
They fell just two games short of the ultimate prize. But even that was nothing to hang their heads about. The Toronto Blue Jays finally ended their magic with Joe Carter‘s walk-off home run in Game Six.
That Toronto club, already defending World Series champions, put a trio of Hall of Famers on the field in Rickey HendersonPaul Molitor, and Roberto Alomar, as well as a handful more all-stars. The 1993 Phillies were within a big blown lead in Game Four and Carter’s heroics of pulling off their most stunning victory of all.
As you justly honor and remember the 2008 Philadelphia Phillies this weekend on the occasion of their 10th anniversary, take some time out to also recall that 1993 Phillies team. A silver anniversary is just as worthy of celebration, especially this one.

Originally published at Phillies Nation as “World Series winners not the only beloved Phillies team celebrating an anniversary

Marlins also feel loss of Phillies hero Darren Daulton

Darren Daulton died Monday at age 55
Former Philadelphia Phillies and Florida (now Miami) Marlins player Darren Daulton died on Monday of brain cancer. He was just 55 years old.
The 1997 Major League Baseball season was just the fifth in the history of the expansion Marlins franchise. The team had begun play in 1993 along with the Colorado Rockies.
The Rockies fielded winning teams in both 1995 and 1996. But the Fish were taking a bit longer, and were unable to field a winner over their first four seasons
For that fifth year, Marlins owner Wayne Huizenga opened the vault. He signed free agent slugger Bobby Bonilla to play third base, as well as outfielder Moises Alou and starting pitcher Alex Fernandez.
These players were added to a core group already present that included “Mr. Marlin”, Jeff Conine, emerging star outfielder Gary Sheffield, veteran outfielder Devon White, and starting pitchers Al Leiter and Kevin Brown.
Young catcher Charles Johnson, second baseman Luis Castillo, and shortstop Edgar Renteria were also in place. A rookie starting pitcher, 22-year old Cuban Livan Hernandez, would emerge as a reliable arm for the club. The closer was talented 27-year old Robb Nen.
The Marlins brought in a proven winner to manage that 1997 club in Jim Leyland. With all their new blood, the Marlins got out to a blistering 8-1 start. They would eventually level off, but another hot stretch in mid-May pushed the team out to a 27-16 record. Florida spent most of the next two months in second place behind the talented Atlanta Braves.

LOCKER ROOM LEADER WAS MISSING INGREDIENT

As the MLB trade deadline approached at the end of July, the Marlins dropped six of eight games, falling into third place in the division. Huizenga and general manager Dave Dombrowski believed that their big investment and talent collection was missing something, some key ingredient.
That ingredient arrived on July 21 when the Marlins dealt prospect outfielder Billy McMillon to the division-rival Philadelphia Phillies. In exchange, coming to South Florida would be one of the greatest locker room and on-field leaders in the game’s recent history.
Darren Daulton was 35 years old by that point, and moving through his 12th big league season. He had spent his entire career in the Philadelphia organization, making his MLB debut all the way back with the ‘Wheeze Kids’ pennant winners in 1983.
Daulton’s reputation as a leader of men was cemented during the 1993 season. Those Phillies shocked the baseball world by going from last place to first, and reaching the World Series. Known as ‘Macho Row’, they were a hard-scrabble bunch of swashbucklers who bashed the ball all around the National League that summer.
Daulton was their acknowledged leader, the man who was unafraid to stand up to anyone no matter their status or role with the team. He was their policeman and captain, and the Marlins wanted that kind of strong, experienced leader in their own clubhouse.

DAULTON HELPS MARLINS REACH PLAYOFFS

Now a first baseman due to the effects of his knee injuries, Daulton received his first start with the Fish on Wednesday, July 23 at Cinergy Field in Cincinnati. He went 2-3 and scored a run in a big 8-1 win over the host Reds.
Daulton found a friendly face waiting for him in Florida to help ease the transition. Jim Eisenreich, had been one of his teammates with those 1993 Phillies, and had also been brought in as a free agent the prior off-season.
Florida would go 36-24 from that first Daulton start until last September, when they clinched that NL Wildcard berth. Daulton hit for a .262/.371/.429 slash line with 21 RBI and 22 runs scored in 152 plate appearances. More importantly, he added just that very veteran leadership that the club needed.
The Marlins dispatched the San Francisco Giants in three straight games in the NLDS. Then the Fish captured the final two games of the NLCS to put away the Braves in six.

THE 1997 WORLD SERIES

In the World Series, the Marlins faced off with a mega-talented Cleveland Indians squad. The Fish and Tribe threw haymakers at one another, with Florida taking game three by a 14-11 score. The Indians responded by scoring 10 to even up the series in game four.
The Marlins responded with an 8-7 win in game five to go up 3-2. But with the Fish a game from winning the championship, Cleveland came right back to win 4-1, sending the Fall Classic to a classic seventh game.
When Leyland presented his lineup card for Game Seven, his cleanup man was none other than Daulton. In one of the most dramatic final games in World Series history, Renteria drilled a base hit in the bottom of the 11th inning to score Craig Counsellwith the walkoff, title-winning run.
There were the usual locker room celebrations and parade, and right in the middle of it was Daulton. When interviewed, his teammates frequently mentioned his positive leadership and influence.
It would turn out to be the final game of Daulton’s career. He walked away a world champion, having hit cleanup in his team’s lineup in the seventh game of the World Series.
John Kruk was one of Daulton’s closest friends, and a teammate with the 1993 Phillies. He was quoted in a piece today by Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald in reference to Daulton’s influence on those 1997 Marlins champions.
“Jim Leyland told me they don’t win the World Series if it wasn’t for Dutch,” Kruk told Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia per Spencer. “He told me when Dutch stepped in that locker room everyone on that team looked at him and said, ‘There’s our leader.’”

The Marlins organization wishes to express our deepest sympathy and sadness over the passing of 1997 World Champion Darren Daulton. https://twitter.com/phillies/status/894387535350292480 

Philography: Red Dooin

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Red Dooin was Phillies catcher for entirety of the 1900’s

My off-season series of Philadelphia Phillies mini bios has featured some of the most popular players and other individuals in team history.

At the catcher position, “Philography” has already covered the relatively recent careers of Bob BooneDarren Daulton, and Mike Lieberthal.
Daulton was the first catcher covered in the series, featured back in December 2014 while I was still with the “That Ball’s Outta Here” site here at FanSided.
Wanting to feature the catcher position more during this current off-season, the careers of Boone and Lieberthal were added to the series in December 2016 and January 2017 respectively.
Now the series continues with a look back at the career of Red Dooin. Over 134 seasons of play, Dooin is second only to Lieberthal in the number of games behind the plate for the Philadelphia Phillies franchise.

DOOIN BREAKS INTO THE BIGS

Charles Sebastian ‘Red’ Dooin was born in Cincinnati, Ohio on September 12, 1879. He worked in the clothing business as a young man, while also enjoying the game of baseball in his spare time.
Dooin excelled at the game, and particularly loved the difficult position of catcher. In 1898, Dooin was signed by the nearby Indianapolis club in the Western League.
Unfortunately for Dooin, as told in a more detailed bio by Norman Macht for SABR, his pro debut was cut short when he “wound up with a broken hand in his first game.
Dooin was diminutive, standing just 5’6″ and weighing just 160 pounds when he began that pro career at age 18 years. He would never carry much more than 190 pounds. According to Macht, this led one of his minor league managers to comment “I wanted a catcher, not a jockey.
He kept plugging away at his baseball career while continuing to work as a tailor over the next couple of years. Finally in 1902, Dooin got his big break when the formation of the new American League led to many more job openings across the big leagues.
The Phillies signed him, and the now 23-year old stepped right into the lineup as their regular catcher for the 1902 season. He hit for just a .231/.262/.270 slash line with no homers and just 10 extra-base hits. That rookie season saw him play in 84 games behind the plate and another half-dozen in the outfield.

DOOIN’S PLAYING CAREER PROFILE

It would be a career preview of what the Phillies were to expect from him offensively over the next dozen years. Dooin would finish with just 10 career homers during the ‘Dead Ball Era’, six of those coming in one outburst during the 1904 campaign.
For his career at the plate, Dooin hit for just a .240/.272/.298 slash line with a .570 OPS mark. One area of Dooin’s game that was a bit unusual for a catcher was that he had speed. Dooin registered double-digit stolen base totals for seven straight years from 1904-10, finishing his career having swiped 133 bags.
In addition to that speed, the other facet of Dooin’s game that was never questioned was the one that kept him as the Phillies starting catcher. Despite being small in stature, Dooin was tough, both physically and mentally.

DOOIN BECOMES PLAYER-MANAGER

The redhead was so tough and colorful that new Phillies ownership gave him the role of player-manager at age 31 in 1910.
In 1911, Dooin had his best season as a player, though his 74 games were the least that he had played since his second season back in 1903. In that 1911 season, Dooin hit for a .328/.366/.409 slash with 15 doubles and a 117 OPS+ mark.
Dooin’s teams finished with winning records in three of his first four seasons as skipper. In 1913 he guided the team to 88 victories, the most by the team in a decade and a half.
The success wouldn’t last, and after the club faded to a 74-80 record and sixth place in 1914, Dooin was fired.

END OF THE LINE

The following year, the Phillies would capture the franchise’ first-ever National League pennant under new manager Pat Moran. But Dooin, who had played the previous 13 seasons in a Phillies uniform, would miss out on the team finally reaching the top.
Dooin would split that 1915 season between Cincinnati and the New York Giants. He would return to New York in 1916, and there would play the final 15 games of a 15-year career in Major League Baseball.
As Macht reports it, Dooin would retire to Atlantic City. He did quite well in real estate and other ventures throughout the ‘Roaring Twenties’, but then fell victim to the Great Depression by 1932. A strong singer, Dooin also peformed for a time in Vaudeville.
Dooin passed away on May 14, 1952 in Rochester, New York, a month shy of his 73rd birthday. His ranking today on the Phillies all-time leader boards among players who were primarily catchers are: Steals (1st), Triples (2nd), Hits (4th), Doubles (6th), RBI (9th) and Runs (9th).