Padres third base coach Glenn Hoffman isn't the only infielder from the eighties celebrating his fifty-fifth birthday today. Former Friar Tim Teufel is also turning the big double-nickel. The parallels don't end there. Like Hoffman, Teufel was a second-round pick, played for three major league teams, and managed at every level of the minors for his penultimate team. Even odder yet, Teufel is also currently employed as, yes, a major league third base coach.
Drafted by Minnesota in 1980, Teufel was in AAA Toledo by 1982 and had a huge season the following year, when he was named International League MVP. He got his first taste of the majors in September of that year and finished fourth in Rookie of the Year voting the following season. Teufel was traded to the Mets for current A's general manager Billy Beane and others before the 1986 season. He platooned at second and got a World Series ring that year, sticking around the Big Apple until early 1991 when he was traded to San Diego for Garry Templeton in a classic change of scenery deal.
A utility infielder by the time the Padres picked him up, Tuffy split time between second and third bases his first season in San Diego. The change of scenery seemed to work for him as he got his bat back on track after batting just .118 in his two months with the Mets. He played two more seasons with the Padres, hitting adequately while bouncing between second and third with the occasional pinch-hitting appearance or game at first base thrown in the mix.
Following his retirement after the 1993 season, Teufel took a little time away from the game before returning to the dugout in street shoes. His first rung managing up the Mets' ladder was at low-A Brooklyn in 2003. He went on to man the helm at St. Lucie, Savannah, St. Lucie again, Binghamton, and Buffalo, paying his dues until he was named the big club's third base coach prior to the 2012 season.
Unlike Glenn Hoffman, Teufel will be celebrating his fifty-fifth birthday with a win. He waved in a pair of runs in New York's 2-1 win over the Brewers. Happy birthday, Tuffy; enjoy your cake!