The position player representative from the 1994 team for this ‘Phillies 50’ series of the most random 1971-2019 players appeared in just 42 big-league games over parts of four seasons. The 24 games that he played in that lone Phillies season were the most he would enjoy.
Tom Quinlan is a Saint Paul, Minnesota native who was selected out of high school in the 27th round of the 1986 MLB Amateur Draft by the Toronto Blue Jays. A two-sport star, Quinlan was also taken by the Calgary Flames in the fourth round of the 1986 NHL Entry Draft. He chose to pursue a baseball career.
Called up by the Jays when rosters expanded in September 1990, Quinlan appeared in just one game that month, registering his first hit in Major League Baseball on September 4, 1990 at Detroit.
After spending the entire 1991 season back at Triple-A Syracuse in the Toronto system, Quinlan got another shot in the majors with the Blue Jays for 13 games during July and August in 1992. He would end up winning a World Series ring that year.
Granted free agency in the fall of 1993, Quinlan left the two-time world champions organization to join the team they had defeated in the World Series a little more than a month earlier when he signed with the Phillies.
His 24 games with the 1994 Phillies come during a two-month stretch during May and June that season. During that period he had one hot stretch. From May 22-29, Quinlan made four starts at third base and appeared in a total of five games. He hit .353 and ripped his lone Phillies home run on May 29, 1994 at Veterans Stadium off Doug Drabek during a 5-2 victory over the Houston Astros.
Quinlan would go 0-for-June, appearing in eight games during which he went 0-11 with three walks and one run scored. Sent down to Triple-A Scranton-Wilkes Barre, he would finish out the season’s final couple months there with the Red Barons.
During the following off-season, Quinlan signed as a free agent with the Minnesota Twins. He would appear in four final MLB games with Minnesota during the 1996 season.
Over the 1997-99 campaigns, Quinlan bounced from the Colorado Rockies to Texas Rangers to Chicago Cubs, spending full seasons with each of their Triple-A clubs but never getting another big-league opportunity.
From 2000-02 at ages 32-34, Quinlan went overseas to continue his career playing in the Korean Baseball Organization before finally hanging up his glove and spikes. During that period, Quinlan became the first-ever foreign-born Korean Series Most Valuable Player in helping lead Hyundai to the 2000 championship.
Tom has a brother, Robb Quinlan, who pitched in the Angels organization from 2003-10 and who went to spring training with the 2011 Phillies. The two brothers have gone in together as part owners of the St. Croix River Hounds, a team scheduled to begin play in the Northwoods League during the summer of 2021.