La Schelle Tarver

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La Schelle Tarver

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Biographical Information[edit]

La Schelle Tarver, who was in the majors in 1986 with the Boston Red Sox, played seven seasons in the minors with a batting average of .312.

Although he was 5' 11" tall, he weighed only 165 lb. and had little power. However, he stole a lot of bases with a peak of 69 in the minors in 1982.

He was acquired by the Red Sox along with Calvin Schiraldi from the New York Mets, in exchange for Bob Ojeda. His whole major league career was in July and September/October of 1986, but he managed to score the game-winning run in one memorable game.

As a 27-year-old rookie with the Red Sox, he had little chance of winning an outfield spot with a team that would go on to almost win the 1986 World Series. The outfield consisted of Jim Rice, Tony Armas and Dwight Evans. Backup outfielders looking for playing time included Mike Greenwell and Dave Henderson.

"Strawberry noticed that black minor leaguers such as La Schelle Tarver and Terry Blocker never made it with the Mets while all sorts of lesser white players like Clint Hurdle, Ron Gardenhire, and Danny Heep played or sat on the bench." - statement from the book Amazin': The Miraculous History of New York's Most Beloved Baseball Team

"La Schelle Tarver, the rookie outfielder, won immediate points for good planning. He carried his bat with him into the stands." - from an article about an altercation between Jim Rice and a Yankee fan at which several Red Sox players jumped into the stands to provide protection; the article says there may have been a racial epithet involved also

Further Reading[edit]

  • Mike Richard: "La Schelle Tarver", in Bill Nowlin and Leslie Heaphy, ed.: The 1986 Boston Red Sox: There Was More Than Game 6, SABR, Phoenix, AZ, 2016. pp. 226-230. ISBN 978-1-943816-19-4

Related Sites[edit]