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Twins Birthdays--August 18

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Billy Consolo (1934)
Bucky Guth (1947)

Infielder William Angelo Consolo was one of the original Minnesota Twins, playing in eleven games for them in 1961. He was born in Cleveland, went to high school in Los Angeles, and was drafted by Boston as a bonus baby in 1953, meaning he was required by rule to be on the big league club for all of 1953 and 1954. The amount of cash he received was actually under the limit, but part of the deal was that the Red Sox purchased the barber shop at the Los Angeles Hilton for his father, a professional barber. Consolo was first used primarily as a pinch-runner and defensive replacement, but later saw more playing time, getting 242 at-bats (his career high) in 1954. He spent nearly all of 1955 at AAA, but was back with the Red Sox in 1956 and achieved one of the odder lines you’ll find: 48 games, 11 at-bats, 2 hits, 13 runs. Consolo worked his way up to part-time status in 1957, but was back to being a pinch-runner/defensive replacement in 1958 and the first part of 1959 before being traded in June to the then Washington Senators for Herb Plews. He saw part-time duty for the Senators the rest of 1959 and in 1960, but was back to pinch-runner/defensive replacement at the start of 1961 before being traded to Milwaukee on June 1 for Billy Martin. As a member of the Washington/Minnesota franchise, Consolo played in 190 games, batted 381 times, and hit .207/.318/.281 with 3 homers and 25 RBIs. Strictly as a Minnesota Twin, he played in 11 games and was 0-for-5. Consolo was in the minors the rest of that year, then was taken by Philadelphia in the Rule 5 draft. In May of 1962 he was purchased by the Angels, and then was selected off waivers by Kansas City in June. The Athletics released him at the end of the season, and his playing career ended. Given how seldom he played while on a major league roster, it’s odd that he was never given extended time in the minors to see if he could develop. Consolo left baseball for a while, becoming a barber in Los Angeles. He came back to baseball in 1979, serving as a coach for the Tigers from 1979-1992 and again in 1995. Billy Consolo passed away on March 27, 2008 in Westlake Village, California, at the age of 73.

Infielder Charles Henry “Bucky” Guth had three at-bats for the Twins in 1972. He was born in Baltimore, Maryland, attended the University of West Virginia, and was drafted by the Braves in the twentieth round in 1969. Baseball-reference.com says that in June of 1970 he was “sent from the Atlanta Braves to the Minnesota Twins in an unknown transaction.” Sadly, despite his awesome name, Bucky Guth was not particularly good. He was never much of a batter, either for average or power–his “best” year in the minors was 1971, when he batted .272/.336/.373 with 8 homers and 53 RBIs for AA Charlotte. The next year he batted .218 for AAA Tacoma, but was still given a September call-up, wearing number 27. Bucky Guth appeared in three games, twice being used as a pinch-runner and once starting at shortstop. He went 0-for-3, but reached on an error, scored a run, and fielded all four chances flawlessly. He spent 1973 in Tacoma, but was out of baseball after that. No information about Bucky Guth’s post-baseball life is readily available.
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