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Jimmy Wayne Tolleson (Born November 22, 1955 in Spartanburgmarker, South Carolinamarker) is a former Major League Baseball player. A switch hitter who threw with his right arm, Tolleson was listed at 5'9" tall and 160 pounds during his playing career. He was primarily a shortstop, but also spent time as a second baseman and third baseman.

Baseball career

Tolleson first attracted the attention of scouts while playing college ball at Western Carolina Universitymarker. The Pittsburgh Pirates chose him with the 304th overall pick of the 1977 Major League Baseball Draft, part of the 12th round, but he decided to return to school for his senior year rather than sign with Pittsburgh. The Texas Rangers chose Tolleson with the 202nd pick of the 1978 Major League Baseball Draft, and this time he signed. By doing so, he gave up the possibility of a career in the National Football League; Tolleson had been an All-American wide receiver, and he led the entire nation in reception his senior year.

Tolleson made his major league debut with the Rangers on September 1, , and served as their regular second baseman in and . He displayed excellent speed and good defense, totaling 55 stolen bases in the two seasons, but he also struggled to maintain an acceptable batting average and he never hit for much power. On November 25, , the Rangers traded Tolleson and relief pitcher Dave Schmidt to the Chicago White Sox in exchange for shortstops Scott Fletcher and José Mota and pitching prospect Ed Correa. He was a member of the White Sox for only a few months, as Chicago sent him to the New York Yankees in another deal on July 30, . In addition to Tolleson, the White Sox shipped out former All-Star Ron Kittle and backup catcher Joel Skinner, acquiring first baseman/third baseman Carlos Martínez and catchers Ron Hassey and Bill Lindsey.

Tolleson spent the rest of his career as a reserve for the Yankees, retiring in . He ended his playing career with a .241 batting average, a .307 on base percentage, and a .293 slugging percentage in 863 games and 2,322 at bats.

Wayne's son, Steve, is currently in the Minnesota Twins minor league farm system.


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