Steve Finley

Steven Allen Finley (born March 12, 1965) is an American former Major League Baseball outfielder.

He was a two-time All-Star (1997, 2000), World Series champion (2001), and five-time Gold Glove Award winner (1995, 1996, 1999, 2000, 2004). He is one of only two players (Matt Herges) to play for all five National League West teams.

Steve Finley
Steve Finley
Finley with the San Francisco Giants
Center fielder
Born: March 12, 1965 (age 54)
Union City, Tennessee
Batted: Left Threw: Left
MLB debut
April 3, 1989, for the Baltimore Orioles
Last MLB appearance
June 3, 2007, for the Colorado Rockies
MLB statistics
Batting average.271
Hits2,548
Home runs304
Runs batted in1,167
Teams
Career highlights and awards

Early life

Finley grew up in Paducah, Kentucky, he attended Paducah Tilghman High School and Southern Illinois University, where he earned a degree in physiology and played for the baseball team from 1984 to 1987.

Career

College, Team USA, and minor leagues

In 1986, Finley was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the 11th round of the draft, but did not sign, instead choosing to remain at SIU, where he was a two-time All-Missouri Valley Conference performer and a third-team All-American in 1986, and named the team's Most Valuable Player in 1987. He is a member of the Saluki Baseball Hall of Fame.[1]

He was a member of the 1986 Team USA squad that won a bronze medal during international competition in the Netherlands.

In 1987, he was drafted by the Baltimore Orioles in the 13th round of the draft, and did sign.

In 919 at bats in the minor leagues, Finley batted .309 and stole 68 bases.

On August 29, 2009, Finley was inducted into the Rochester Red Wings Hall of Fame.

Major leagues

In January 1991, he was traded by the Orioles with Pete Harnisch and Curt Schilling to the Houston Astros for Glenn Davis. That year he was third in the league in triples (10), sixth in hits (170), ninth in stolen bases (34), and tenth in sacrifice hits (10). His 13 outfield assists tied Barry Bonds and Paul O'Neill for third in the league.

In 1992, he led the NL in games played (162), was second in triples (13), third in stolen bases (44; a career high) and sacrifice hits (10), and seventh in hits (177).

In 1993, he led the league in triples (13). He had been slowed in spring training by Bell's palsy, a viral infection of a nerve in his upper neck, resulting in numbness that prevented him from closing his left eye.

In 1994, he was second in the league in sacrifice hits (13), and tenth in triples (5). He appeared in only 94 games due to an injury and strike-shortened season. He missed nearly a month after being hit by a pitch on June 8 in Montreal, breaking the third metacarpal bone in his right hand. In December 1994, he was traded by the Astros with Ken Caminiti, Andújar Cedeño, Roberto Petagine, Brian Williams, and minor leaguer Sean Fesh to the San Diego Padres for Derek Bell, Doug Brocail, Ricky Gutiérrez, Pedro A. Martinez, Phil Plantier, and Craig Shipley.

In 1995, Finley batted a career-high .297 and was third in the league in runs (104) and triples (8), and fourth in stolen bases (36) and hits (167). Finley also won his first Gold Glove Award. He was the only National League player to have 100 runs, 10 home runs, and 35 stolen bases. He stole a career-high 4 bases on August 12 vs. St. Louis. He was in the delivery room on September 1 when son Reed was born, and then headed to the ballpark and played in the 8th and 9th innings of San Diego's 6–3 win over the Philadelphia Phillies.

He was named MVP in the All-Stars Series between Japan and United States (Tokyo, 1996). Later in 1996, during Rickey Henderson's first season with San Diego, he boarded the team bus and was looking for a seat. Finley said, "You have tenure, sit wherever you want." Henderson looked at Finley and said, "Ten years? Rickey's been playing at least 16, 17 years."[2] In 1996, Finley was second in the NL in runs (126; a career high) and doubles (45), third in extra base hits (84), fourth in triples (9), and sixth in hits (195). Finley won his second Gold Glove Award and came in tenth in the MVP voting. He established Padres' records in runs, doubles, extra-base hits, and total bases.

In 1997, he hit three home runs in a game twice in the same season (May 19 and June 23). Finley was voted to the All-Star team, and finished eighth in the league in runs (101).

He hit his first game-ending grand slam on April 10, 1998, for the Padres. The Padres would appear in the World Series that year against the Yankees, only to be swept in four games.

In December 1998, he signed as a free agent with the Arizona Diamondbacks. In 1999, he hit three home runs and drove in 6 runs in a game on September 8, 1999. That season he had 34 home runs and a career-high 103 RBI, and was seventh in the league in extra base hits (76). Finley also won his third Gold Glove Award.

In 2000, he had 35 home runs and a career-high .544 slugging percentage, and was ninth in the league in sacrifice flies (9). He was voted to the All Star team. Finley also had 10 outfield assists and won his fourth Gold Glove Award. He was named the team co-Player-of-the-Year with Luis Gonzalez by the Arizona chapter of the BBWAA.

In 2001, Finley had a stellar postseason, leading the Diamondbacks with a .421 batting average in the National League Division Series and 5 RBI in the National League Championship Series as Arizona went on to win its first World Series. On August 30 of that year, Finley became the Diamondbacks' first position player to serve as a relief pitcher, during a 13–5 loss to the San Francisco Giants.[3] Finley would win his first and only World Series title of his career against the Yankees in 7 games, the same team he lost 3 years prior to in 1998 while with the Padres.

In 2003, Finley led the league in triples (10), becoming the oldest player in Major League history to lead his league in triples.

In July 2004, he was traded by the Diamondbacks with Brent Mayne to the Los Angeles Dodgers for Koyie Hill, Reggie Abercrombie, and Bill Murphy (minors).

He hit his second career game-ending grand slam October 2, 2004. In 2004, he was eighth in at bats (628) and plate appearances (706), and was ninth in home runs (36; the third-highest total ever for a 39-year-old in the Majors, behind Barry Bonds and Hank Aaron). Finley also won his fifth Gold Glove Award and tied Pete Rose's record of playing in 162 games at the age of 39.[4] He hit a game-winning, walk-off grand slam to cap a seven-run ninth inning on October 2 against San Francisco that clinched National League Western Division championship for the Dodgers.

In December 2004, Finley signed as a free agent with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. In 2005, he missed 18 games due to strained right shoulder, his first DL stint since 1997. In December 2005 he was traded by the Angels to the San Francisco Giants for Edgardo Alfonzo.

In 2006, at the age of 41, Finley became the oldest player ever to play more than 100 games in center field.

On November 1, 2006, the Giants declined their option on Finley for the 2007 season, which made him a free agent. On February 24, 2007, Finley signed a minor-league contract with the Colorado Rockies. After an impressive spring, Finley made their Opening Day roster. On June 5, 2007, the Rockies designated Finley for assignment, giving the Rockies 10 days to trade, release, or outright Finley to the minor leagues. Finley had batted .181 (17-for-94) with one home run and two RBIs in 43 games for Colorado.[5] He was released on June 17, 2007. At the time of his release, of all active players, he was first in triples (124), 3rd in games (2,583) and at-bats (9,397), 4th in hits (2,548), 7th in runs (1,443), 8th in total bases (4,157), and 9th in doubles (449) and stolen bases (320). He also had the 4th-most center field appearances in major league history. He was also the sixth-oldest player in the NL.

See also

References

  1. ^ "2013 Baseball Media Guide". siuc.edu. Retrieved August 23, 2016.
  2. ^ "Wit and wisdom of Rickey Henderson". San Francisco Gate. 24 July 2009. Retrieved 1 February 2017.
  3. ^ "Giants' bats wake up just in time to prevent D-Backs' sweep". go.com. Retrieved August 23, 2016.
  4. ^ "Batting Leaders Before, During and After Age 39 - Baseball-Reference.com". baseball-reference.com. Retrieved August 23, 2016.
  5. ^ "Rockies designate outfielder Steve Finley for assignment; Select contract of outfielder Sean Barker". mlb.com. Retrieved August 23, 2016.

External links

1986 Major League Baseball draft

The 1986 Major League Baseball Draft was the 22nd MLB draft that took place in 1986. During this draft 21 future all-stars were drafted including, Greg Swindell, Matt Williams, Kevin Brown, Gary Sheffield, Roberto Hernández, Jack Armstrong, Dean Palmer, Scott Cooper, Kent Bottenfield, Bo Jackson, Joe Girardi, Pat Hentgen, Tom Gordon, Steve Finley, Rod Beck, Chuck Knoblauch, Rick Reed, Paul Quantrill, John Olerud, Scott Erickson and Todd Jones.

1989 Baltimore Orioles season

The 1989 Baltimore Orioles season was a season in American baseball. It involved the Orioles finishing 2nd in the American League East with a record of 87 wins and 75 losses. The team was known as the Comeback Kids as they rebounded from the 54 wins and 107 losses of the 1988 season. The season also took on the "Why Not?!" promotional slogan as the team's pursuit of the pennant went down to the final series of the regular season. The Orioles went into the three-game season finale against the first place Toronto Blue Jays down by one game in the AL East standings and needing either a sweep to win the AL East championship, or two wins to force a one-game playoff. The Blue Jays won the first two games of the series, clinching first place on the penultimate game of the season.

1990 Baltimore Orioles season

The 1990 Baltimore Orioles season was a season in American baseball in which the Orioles finished fifth in the American League East with a record of 76 wins and 85 losses.

1991 Houston Astros season

The Houston Astros' 1991 season was a season in American baseball. It involved the Houston Astros attempting to win the National League West.

The Astros finished 65-97, which tied the 1965 and 1975 clubs for the most losses in franchise history at the time.

1993 Houston Astros season

The Houston Astros' 1993 season was a season in American baseball. It involved the Houston Astros attempting to win the National League West.

1995 San Diego Padres season

The 1995 San Diego Padres season was the 27th season in franchise history.

1996 MLB Japan All-Star Series

The 1996 MLB Japan All-Star Series was the fifth edition of the championship, a best-of-eight series between the All-Star teams from Major League Baseball (MLB) and Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB), then-called All-Japan.

MLB won the series by 4–2–2 and Steve Finley was named MVP.

1996 San Diego Padres season

The 1996 San Diego Padres season was the 28th season in franchise history.

1997 San Diego Padres season

The 1997 San Diego Padres season was the 29th season in franchise history. The Padres finished last in the National League West. Right fielder (and future Hall of Famer) Tony Gwynn had the highest batting average in the majors, at .372.

In April, the Padres played three home games at the Aloha Stadium in Hawaii against the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cardinals won the opening two games (a double header) on April 19, winning the first 1-0 and the second 2-1 before the Padres won game 3 on Sunday April 20 by a score of 8-2. Reported attendances were 37,382 (game 2) and 40,050 (game 3).

1999 Arizona Diamondbacks season

The 1999 Arizona Diamondbacks looked to improve on their 1998 expansion season. They looked to contend in what was a strong National League West Division. They finished the season with a highly surprising record of 100-62, good enough for the NL West division title. In the NLDS, however, they fell in four games to the New York Mets on Todd Pratt's infamous home run. Randy Johnson would win the NL Cy Young Award and become the third pitcher to win the Cy Young Award in both leagues.

2002 Arizona Diamondbacks season

The 2002 Arizona Diamondbacks looked to repeat as World Series champions. They looked to contend in what was once again a strong National League West Division. They finished the season with a record of 98-64, good enough for the division title. Randy Johnson would finish the season as the NL Cy Young Award winner and become the second pitcher to win five Cy Young Awards.

2004 Los Angeles Dodgers season

The 2004 season brought change to the Dodgers as the sale of the franchise to developer Frank McCourt was finalized during spring training. McCourt promptly dismissed General Manager Dan Evans and hired Paul DePodesta to take over the team. That led to a flurry of trade activity as the new group attempted to rebuild the Dodgers in their image.

Despite it all, the Dodgers managed to finish the season in first place in the Western Division of the National League and won their first post season game since 1988. However they lost the NL Division Series 3-1 to the St. Louis Cardinals.

Harrisonburg Turks

The Harrisonburg Turks are a collegiate summer baseball team in Harrisonburg, Virginia. They play in the South division of the Valley Baseball League, a collegiate wooden bat summer league consisting of 12 teams in the state of Virginia.

Itch Jones

Richard "Itch" Jones (born 1938 in Herrin, Illinois) is a retired college baseball coach.

Jones broke his leg while in third grade, and the cast he had to wear caused severe itching. To get a measure of relief, he stuck a flyswatter handle between the cast and his leg. His cousin, Albert, nicknamed him "Itchy." The nickname stuck, though in later years it was shortened to "Itch."A 1960 graduate of Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, Jones played second base under Abe Martin. He then played one year in the Baltimore Orioles minor-league system. In 1961 Jones accepted a position at Jacksonville High School coaching freshman football and junior varsity basketball. In 1964 Jones was promoted to head varsity basketball coach. In 1964 Jones led his JHS team to the Sweet Sixteen in the Illinois High School basketball tournament.

Jones became head baseball coach at MacMurray College in 1966. He then returned to his alma mater as an assistant under Joe Lutz in 1968, becoming head coach in 1970. In 21 years, he led the Salukis to 10 NCAA Tournaments and three College World Series. His best team was the 1971 unit, which came within one game of winning the national title. His record of 738-345-5 is still the best in school history.In 1991, Jones moved to Illinois as head coach. In 15 years, he compiled a record of 474-373-1, including two Big Ten regular-season titles, a Big Ten Tournament title in 2000, and two NCAA tournament appearances. He retired after the 2005 season. At the time of his retirement, he was the 15th winningest coach in collegiate baseball history.

Twenty of Jones' players went on to play in the major leagues, including Dave Stieb, Steve Finley and Scott Spezio. He was named national coach of the year twice, in 1971 and 1977.

List of San Diego Padres team records

The San Diego Padres are a Major League Baseball (MLB) franchise based in San Diego, California. The Padres were granted a Major League team in 1968, taking their name from the minor-league San Diego Padres of the Pacific Coast League. Through May 16, 2015, they have played 7,365 games, winning 3,417, losing 3,946, and tying two for a winning percentage of .464. This list documents the superlative records and accomplishments of team members during their tenure as members of Major League Baseball's National League.

Tony Gwynn holds the most franchise records as of the end of the 2010 season, with 15, including best single-season batting average, most career hits, and most career triples. He is followed by Randy Jones, who holds thirteen records, including most career shutouts and the single-season loss record.

Trevor Hoffman is ranked fifth in Major League Baseball for most saves in a single season, while ranking second in all-time saves, recording 601 over his 18-year career. Offensively, Gwynn has the 18th highest hit total in Major League history, recording 3,141 hits over a 19-year Major League career.

Matt Herges

Matthew Tyler Herges (born April 1, 1970) is a former Major League Baseball relief pitcher. He played for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Montreal Expos, San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants, Arizona Diamondbacks, Florida Marlins, Colorado Rockies and Cleveland Indians between 1999 and 2009. He is one of only two players (Steve Finley) to play for all five National League West teams. Herges is an alumnus of Illinois State University and is the brother-in-law of former Major League Baseball player Todd Hollandsworth. He is currently the bullpen coach for the San Francisco Giants.

Rawlings Gold Glove Award

The Rawlings Gold Glove Award, usually referred to as simply the Gold Glove, is the award given annually to the Major League Baseball players judged to have exhibited superior individual fielding performances at each fielding position in both the National League (NL) and the American League (AL), as voted by the managers and coaches in each league. It is also awarded to women fastpitch softball players in the National Pro Fastpitch as of 2016. Managers are not permitted to vote for their own players. Additionally, a sabermetric component provided by Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) accounts for approximately 25 percent of the vote. Eighteen Gold Gloves are awarded each year (with the exception of 1957, 1985, 2007, and 2018), one at each of the nine positions in each league. In 1957, the baseball glove manufacturer Rawlings created the Gold Glove Award to commemorate the best fielding performance at each position. The award was created from a glove made from gold lamé-tanned leather and affixed to a walnut base. Initially, only one Gold Glove per position was awarded to the top fielder at each position in Major League Baseball; however, separate awards were given for the National and American Leagues beginning in 1958.

Reggie Sanders

Reginald Laverne Sanders (born December 1, 1967) is a former right fielder in Major League Baseball. He batted and threw right-handed. Sanders was 23 years old when he made his major league debut on August 22, 1991, after being selected in the seventh round of the 1987 amateur draft by the Cincinnati Reds. He attended Spartanburg Methodist College before beginning his pro career with the Rookie-level Billings Mustangs of the Pioneer League in 1988. He also played professionally with the St. Louis Cardinals, Pittsburgh Pirates, Atlanta Braves, San Francisco Giants, San Diego Padres and Kansas City Royals, and was a member of the Arizona Diamondbacks' 2001 World Series championship over the New York Yankees. With the Cardinals, Sanders had a breakout of sorts during the 2005 National League Division Series against the San Diego Padres. In a three-game sweep of the Padres, Sanders had 10 runs batted in, a new record for a division series.

Sanders gained some notoriety during the 1994 season when Pedro Martínez hit him with a pitch to end his bid for a perfect game with one out in the eighth inning. Sanders responded by charging the mound and igniting a bench-clearing brawl. He was ridiculed by some in the press for believing that a pitcher would abandon an attempt at a perfect game to intentionally hit a batter.In Game 1 of the 2005 NLCS Sanders hit a two run home run to give the Cardinals a two run lead, making it his seventh career postseason home run. However, the Cardinals would lose the series in six games, giving the Houston Astros their first NL pennant and trip to the World Series.

On June 10, 2006, as a member of the Royals, Reggie hit his 300th home run. This made him the fifth member of Major League Baseball's 300-300 club, as he had stolen the 300th base of his career on May 1, and had gotten his 302nd career stolen base just a day earlier. He became the first player in history to join the club at his home stadium. Steve Finley of the San Francisco Giants joined the 300-300 club as its sixth member on June 14, four days after Sanders achieved the feat. Sanders hit 20 or more home runs in one season for five different National League teams. He hit at least 10 home runs in a season for every major league team he played for (seven in all).Sanders missed the majority of the 2007 season due to an injury and became a free agent after the season.

Sean Barker

Sean Reed Barker (born May 26, 1980) is a former Major League Baseball outfielder. He made his major league debut June 6, 2007, with a plate appearance against Chad Qualls of the Houston Astros. He was hit by the very first pitch of his major league career and then stranded on second base after advancing on a fielders choice.

Barker was a sixth-round pick in the 2002 Major League Baseball Draft. He was called up from the Colorado Springs Sky Sox to replace Steve Finley when he was designated for assignment. He received the phone call from Tom Runnels, his minor league manager, informing him that he needed to be at Coors Field in time to play in the upcoming series against the Astros, while at the movies watching "Knocked Up".[1] He became a free agent at the end of the 2008 season.

Barker retired after the 2008 season and started Socks-ON, a non-profit organization committed to raising awareness for Myotonic Muscular Dystrophy, a hereditary disease that his mother and brother suffer from. www.socks-on.org

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