After pleading guilty to distributing crack cocaine in August, shopworn New York Yankees pitching prospect Brien Taylor was sentenced today to 38 months in prison by U.S. District Court Judge Louise W. Flanagan in New Bern, North Carolina.
The 40-year-old Taylor, a southpaw who the Yankees selected with the first overall pick in the 1991 Major League Baseball (MLB) draft, was pinched in March peddling boatloads of rock to undercover narcotics agents working for the Carteret County Sheriff’s Office.
Taylor, who was named after the primary character in the classic flick Brian’s Song, consistently threw 99 mph and many scouts contended he was the most dominant high school pitcher in recent memory.
Subsequently, the Bombers inked the native of Beaufort to a three-year contract worth $1.2 million that included a then-record $1.55 million signing bonus.
Sadly, because of injuries suffered to his famed left shoulder during an uncharacteristic fistfight in December 1993, the easygoing Taylor never once performed at East 161st Street and River Ave in the South Bronx.
Following the melee at a trailer home Harlowe, North Carolina, Taylor visited renowned orthopedic surgeon Dr. Frank Jobe.
Prior to repairing a torn capsule and labrum, Dr. Jobe described the damage to Taylor’s bummed wing as the worst he’d ever examined.
Upon healing and returning to the mound, Taylor had shaved 8 mph off his fastball and was unable to toss a curveball for a strike.
As an irreparably damaged good, the Yankees axed Taylor at the conclusion of the 1998 season.
In addition to moving yam on the corners, at various times Taylor was employed as a UPS package handler, a beer distributor and a bricklayer with his father.
“This is a tragic story — all too often our professional athletes spiral into criminal activity after an athletic disappointment or injury,” Thomas Walker, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, told ESPN in a statement. “I think all of us hope that Mr. Taylor, like many others who have gone down this road, will put their activity behind them and move to a better place in their life.”
Countless athletes have ultimately proven to be entitled pricks that are flatly bitchy divas.
Regrettably, Taylor is not a clowns pocket or an unlikable scumbag.
As Walker said, “hope that Mr. Taylor, like many others who have gone down this road, will put their activity behind them and move to a better place in their life.”by