Former Phillies infielder Tony Taylor dies at 84

Tony Taylor dies
Hunter Martin/Getty Images

Longtime Phillies infielder Tony Taylor died on Thursday morning at the age of 84 due to complications following a stroke suffered in 2019, the club announced.

Taylor played 19 seasons in the majors from 1958-76, 15 of them with the Phillies. He was one of the most popular players in Philadelphia, even though he wouldn’t reach the postseason with the Phillies until his final year with the team in 1976.

The Phillies originally acquired Taylor from the Cubs in May 1960 along with Cal Neeman, sending Ed Bouchee and Don Cardwell to Chicago. Taylor was traded from the Phillies to the Tigers in June 1971 for a pair of minor leaguers. The Tigers released him in the offseason after the 1973 season and he re-signed for a second stint with the Phillies.

Across his 19 years in the big leagues, Taylor hit .261/.321/.352 with 298 doubles, 75 home runs, 598 RBI, 1,005 runs scored, and 234 stolen bases. He was also well-regarded for his defense. Taylor was a two-time All-Star, making it twice in 1960, during the brief period MLB played two All-Star Games in the same season.

Taylor was inducted into the Phillies’ Wall of Fame in 2002. A native of Cuba, Taylor was also inducted into the Hispanic Heritage Baseball Museum Hall of Fame in 2004.

Colin Poche, Rays go to arbitration just $125,000 apart

Colin Poche torn UCL
Getty Images

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Reliever Colin Poche went to salary arbitration with the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday with the sides just $125,000 apart.

The gap between the $1.3 million the pitcher asked for and the $1,175,000 the team offered was the smallest among the 33 players who exchanged proposed arbitration figures last month. The case was heard by John Woods, Jeanne Vonhof and Walt De Treux, who will hold their decision until later this month.

A 29-year-old left-hander, Poche had Tommy John surgery on July 29, 2020, and returned to the major leagues last April 22 after six appearances at Triple-A Durham. Poche was 4-2 with a 3.99 ERA and seven saves in 65 relief appearances for the Rays. He struck out 64 and walked 22 in 58 2/3 innings.

Poche had a $707,800 salary last year.

Tampa Bay went to arbitration on Monday with reliever Ryan Thompson, whose decision also is being held until later this month. He asked for $1.2 million and the Rays argued for $1 million.

Rays right-hander Jason Adam and outfielder Harold Ramirez remain scheduled for hearings.

Players and teams have split four decisions thus far. All-Star pitcher Max Fried ($13.5 million) lost to Atlanta and reliever Diego Castillo ($2.95 million) was defeated by Seattle, while pitcher Jesus Luzardo ($2.45 million) and AL batting champion Luis Arraez ($6.1 million) both beat the Marlins.

A decision also is pending for Los Angeles Angels outfielder Hunter Renfroe.

Eighteen additional players are eligible for arbitration and hearings are scheduled through Feb. 17. Among the eligible players is Seattle utilityman Dylan Moore, who has a pending three-year contract worth $8,875,000.