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Chili Davis
Outfielder / Designated hitter
Born: January 17, 1960 (1960-01-17) (age 49)
Kingston, Jamaica
Batted: Switch Threw: Right 
MLB debut
April 10, 1981 for the San Francisco Giants
Last MLB appearance
October 3, 1999 for the New York Yankees
Career statistics
Batting average     .274
Home runs     350
Runs batted in     1,372
Teams
Career highlights and awards

Charles Theodore "Chili" Davis (born January 17, 1960 in Kingston, Jamaica),is a former outfielder/designated hitter who played in Major League Baseball with the San Francisco Giants (1981-87), California Angels (1988-90, 1993-96), Minnesota Twins (1991-92), Kansas City Royals (1997) and New York Yankees (1998-99). Davis was a switch-hitter and threw right-handed. He is the first ballplayer born in Jamaica to appear in a major league game, and is arguably the greatest Jamaican baseball player in MLB history.

Contents

Career

In a 19-year career, Davis was a .274 hitter with 350 home runs and 1372 RBI in 2436 games.

Davis was an outfielder developed in the Giants minors system. In his first regular season in 1982, he hit .261 with 19 HR, 76 RBI and 24 stolen bases, and also led all National League outfielders in assists. In 1984 Davis finished third in NL batting average (.315), behind Tony Gwynn (.351) and Lee Lacy (.321). When he led the league in fielding errors in 1986, his nine errors tied the major league record for fewest errors by a category leader. After five seasons in San Francisco, including two All-Star appearances in 1984 and 1986, Davis signed with the Angels as a free agent before the 1988 season.

In his first two years with California, Davis hit 21 HR and 93 RBI (in 1988), and then 22 HR and 90 RBI (in 1989). In 1990, hampered by chronic back problems and defensive shortcomings, Davis moved from full-time outfield duty to a DH role. After signing with Minnesota the following year, Davis remained a DH and would do so for the rest of his career.

Davis contributed to the Twins with his switch-hitting ability, as the Twins' lineup already possessed right-handed batting Kirby Puckett and left-handed batting Kent Hrbek. Though he hit well from both sides of the plate, Davis performed better from the left side, as many switch hitters do due to their facing more right-handed pitching. In 1991 he led the Twins in home runs (29), RBI (93), doubles (34), walks (95), intentional walks (13), times on base (244), pitches seen (2,469), games played (153), slugging average (.507), on base percentage (.385), OPS (.892), home run frequency (18.4 at bat per HR), and most pitches seen per plate appearance (3.89). With these numbers, Davis helped Minnesota rise from a last-place finish the previous year to the AL West title. In the 1991 World Series, in which he hit two home runs, Davis and the Twins defeated the Atlanta Braves in seven games. Davis declined in production in 1992 (12 HR and 66 RBI), and as a free agent the following year returned to the Angels.

Davis provided four years of solid production for California, including 27 HR and a career-high 112 RBI in 1993. In 1994, he hit .311, with 26 HR and 84 RBI, and appeared in the All-Star game in the strike-shortened 1994 season. In 1995, he hit .318 with 20 HR and 86 RBI, and in 1996 hit .292, 28 HR and 96 RBI. In 1997 he was traded to Kansas City for starter Mark Gubicza. In his one year with the Royals, Davis hit .269 with 90 RBI and a career-high 30 HR.

Davis spent his final two seasons with the Yankees, winning his second and third World Series rings. He finished his career in 1999 hitting .269 with 19 HR and 78 RBI. In 2000, the Yankees used many different players to fill the DH role formerly occupied by Davis, including Shane Spencer, José Canseco, Glenallen Hill, Chuck Knoblauch, David Justice and Jim Leyritz.

Among switch-hitters, only Mickey Mantle, Eddie Murray, and Chipper Jones have more career home runs than Davis' 350.

Nickname

  • When he was 12 years old, Davis received a horrendous haircut, which earned him the unfortunate nickname "Chili Bowl". Later, it was shortened to "Chili".

Civil Court Case

On August 5, 2003, New Zealand singer Haylee Fisher filed a civil suite in Maricopa County Civil Court to recoup assets brought into the brief relationship.[1][2] During the trial, Fisher alleged that Chili Davis had attacked her in her home while she was showering, held her to the floor with his foot, spit chewing tobacco onto her and urinated into a drain next to her head over several hours with the intent of intimidating her into signing over the title of a car. Fisher also testified that one night after moving out of the home she shared with Davis, she awoke one night to find Davis sitting in a chair next to her bed. He then handed her a phone and asked her if there was anyone she wanted to call then ripped the phone from the wall.[1] In court Fishers' counsel introduced a tape where Davis could be heard saying, "Haylee, you deserved to get hit . . . and any woman that I ever met like you deserves to get their ass kicked." [1]

Judgement

On October 9, 2008, The Civil Jury found in favor of Fisher and awarded her $350,000 along with jury and judgment fees.[3]

Davis could not be reached for this story, but one of his attorneys, Teresa Thayer, characterized the relationship between Davis and Fisher as "volatile," and called Fishers' testimony uncorroborated.

"She was just allowed to testify about things she alleged," Thayer said.

But the jurors believed her. They determined Davis had committed assault and battery and ordered him to pay her $350,000 in damages.

Haylee Fisher filed a civil suit in Maricopa County Civil Court to recoup assets brought into the brief relationship. Civil suits are filed in these cases due to lack of evidence to support a criminal trial. If Davis had been prosecuted and convicted in criminal court, where the burden of proof is greater than in civil court, he could have been sentenced to decades in prison. Because it was a civil, not criminal trial, Thayer felt the jury verdict eventually may be set aside, either by the trial judge or an appeals court.

But even if the jury did believe Fisher, the public did not. The morning after the jury verdict, an unidentified woman called the JohnJay and Rich morning show, KISS FM Phoenix claiming to be "the woman who sued Chili Davis." The woman told the breathless disc jockeys that she had lied in court and had made her children lie in court to get Davis money she felt he "owed" her. She bragged that "she got away with it too"

It was not Fisher, but for some listeners, the anonymous confession rang true. They called and e-mailed The Republic to report the injustice committed - against Davis.

Miss Fisher is now facing possible criminal charges. The SEC claims that Bruce Friedman transferred at least $1.8 million in investor funds to the Friedman Charitable Foundation, of which he is president, and $275,000 to Haylee Fisher of Auckland, New Zealand whom the SEC identifies as his girlfriend. (Fisher said she was never “romantically involved” with Friedman.) Friedman is said to have purchased cars, vacations, a $6.5million Malibu mansion—and jewelry and designer clothing for himself and an alleged girlfriend, Haylee Fisher, who is named in the complaint.

See also

References

External links

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