100 Greatest Phillies: 75 – Jay Johnstone

Posted by Tim Malcolm, Sun, January 11, 2009 03:39 PM | Comments: 12
100 Greatest Phillies, Posts

Jay Johnstone

Career w/Phillies: .303 AVG / 33 HR / 200 RBI / 20 SB

One of the game’s greatest fourth outfielders, Jay Johnstone spent four seasons with the Phillies. And in Philadelphia, he was a very solid hitter, posting his best numbers as he hit his prime. A journeyman by the time the Phils grabbed him, he quickly provided veteran leadership to a young outfield that included Greg Luzinski and Mike Anderson. He was also a great postseason hitter, putting up a ridiculous 7-for-9 in the 1976 National League Championship Series. He would later hit a pinch home run for the Dodgers in the 1981 World Series. Moreover, Johnstone was known for his pranking ways, and pranked Tommy Lasorda more than the Phanatic.

Comment: Steady and strong, Johnstone was instrumental in bringing a winning attitude to Philadelphia in the mid 1970s. While he never got the playing time a regular received, he was always very good at his job, and posted very good numbers as a fourth outfielder.

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Tim Malcolm has written 1948 articles on Phillies Nation.

  • Posts: 0 Justin

    Does anyone have an opinion about the Phillies going after the 2 cuban defects one was the best pitcher in Cuba, and was the best pitcher in the 06 WBC and the other is a speedy outfielder, both are touted as ML ready. I think the Phils should at least test the waters and see what they’re asking for and take a shot who knows what can happen with it.

  • Posts: 0 IRONPIGPEN

    Good pick. Positive team player, Jay Johnstone

  • Posts: 0 TS

    Here’s a Johnstone image on the Phillies if you’re interested:


  • Posts: 0 KM

    At first it alarmed me that the number 75 phillie of all time is in a cubs card in his picture, but then I noticed the picture and saw that it had to be done.

  • Posts: 0 Chapps

    That picture is even better then the Billy Ripken F-face card.

  • Posts: 0 KeelerPi

    Remember “Play Jay Everyday!!”

  • Posts: 0 Malcolm

    I do.

  • Posts: 0 Jamie

    Met him at the Legends Game down in Clearwater three years ago. Classy guy and was signing autographs for anyone who asked.

  • Posts: 0 Bloagie

    Not sure how you could put Thome, Myers, and Mitch Williams higher than this guy

  • Posts: 0 Denise Molenock

    Met him in the 70′s and have three autographs, I remember him sucking on suckers in the outfield. My brothers use to take me to the games when I was young. Still have his autographs from the 70′s. Wonder how much thier worth. Still love him to this day.

  • Posts: 0 Herb Ober

    You gotta be shi**tting me? You have a platoon player ahead of the best rightfielder in Phillies history? Johnstone was never an everyday player.

  • Posts: 0 David

    Johnstone was a big surprise for the Phillies and posted an OPS of .823 in his time with the Phillies. Yes, he was platooned but in five seasons with the Phillies, he had 1400 at bats. Unbelieveable in 1975 and a key player on the 1976 and 1977 division championship teams. .

    Luzinski’s OPS was .850 with the Phillies. Callison’s was .795 in a pitcher’s era. Von Hayes had an OPS of .789 with the Phillies. Kruk had an OPS of .861. Daulton’s OPS was .789.

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