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100 Greatest Phillies

100 Greatest Phillies: 17 – Greg Luzinski

Greg Luzinski

Career w/Phillies: .280 AVG / 223 HR / 811 RBI / 29 SB

“The Bull” was a state of being as much as it was a nickname. Greg Luzinski, a hulking, brutish man of 225 pounds, was one of the most feared sluggers in Phillies history. Drafted by the Phils in the first round in 1968, Luzinski made his mark at age 21, in 1972. Playing a full season in the outfield, Luzinski hit 18 home runs, and just as impressive, recorded a .281 average. That would be the hallmark of Luzinski’s splendid career: While his power ballooned, his average remained solid. His best hitting season was 1977, when he hit .309 with 39 home runs and 130 runs batted in. He finished second in National League MVP voting to George Foster and his 52 homers. Luzinski also had a fantastic 1975 season, hitting 34 bombs, driving in 120 and hitting .300. Again he finished second in MVP voting, this time to Joe Morgan (.327, 67 SB). The Bull would have a few more great offensive seasons until 1980, when injuries derailed him to a tune of 19 HR, 56 RBI, .228 AVG. Breaking the hearts of Phillie fans after the ’80 world championship, Luzinski was allowed free agency and signed with the White Sox. He returned to form there, hitting 84 homers primarily as the team’s designated hitter. Despite his final seasons in Chicago, Luzinski is forever a Phillie. His No. 19, mutton chops, chubby face and nice demeanor lives on at Bull’s BBQ at Citizens Bank Park.

Comment: The four-time All-Star was one of the top sluggers of the 1970s, but never reached the star power of the Fosters, Stargells and Schmidts of the world. Still, The Bull was a great home run hitter, and an imposing presence on the list. The man just ahead of him … very, very slightly better.

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