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Padres Rule 5 Draft History: Clifton Wherry, 1981

Bob Levey

One year after acquiring Mario Ramirez and Alan Wiggins in the 1980 Rule 5 Draft, the Padres selected AA shortstop Clifton Wherry from the Astros. If you don't remember him, you are not alone. He was returned to the Houston organization before the 1982 season and never made it to the major leagues.

I tried to find out more about Clifton Wherry other than his minor league statistics, but came up short. Most search results concerned another Clifton Wherry, twenty years the ballplayer's junior, who was sentenced to life in prison for his role in a Brinks truck robbery that ended in murder.

When I noticed that the younger Wherry's name was in fact Clifton Wherry, Jr, I dug around a bit to see if the two were related. Knowing that the elder Wherry's middle name is Nelson, I was even more intrigued when I found out that the robber Wherry's middle initial is N. That's where the trail ended, though. I tried several combinations of keywords and scoured a bunch of articles and couldn't find any mention of whether the older one has a son or who the younger one's dad is. Even if that's not his son, it has got to be weird to have the same name as someone convicted of such a heinous crime. Kinda like the time Elaine Benes dated a guy named Joel Rifkin.

Next up in the Padres Rule 5 Draft History series: Bip Roberts.