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Former No. 1 pick, Yankees prospect Brien Taylor indicted on cocaine charges

Jun 19, 2012, 4:46 PM EDT

Brien Taylor mugshot

As if Brien Taylor’s story wasn’t sad enough when injuries from a bar fight turned him from elite pitching prospect to bust, the former Yankees No. 1 overall pick has been indicted on three counts of distributing crack cocaine.

Taylor is now 40 years old and the Associated Press reports that he was indicted in North Carolina following a March arrest for allegedly “selling large quantities of cocaine and crack cocaine to an undercover narcotics agent over a span of several months.”

He’s two decades removed from getting a $1.55 million signing bonus and Taylor ranked No. 1 and No. 2 on Baseball America‘s annual prospect list in 1992 and 1993. He never pitched in the majors and in fact never even made it to Triple-A.

  1. mybrunoblog - Jun 19, 2012 at 4:51 PM

    I’ll disagree and say Taylor’s situation isn’t “sad”. People getting cancer. That’s sad. This is simply a case of a person who has awful judgement, makes bad decisions and has become a useless member of our society.
    Yes it’s harsh but the truth isn’t always pretty.

    • jjschiller - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:02 PM

      All of those things can be true, and it can still be a sad story.

      Blame and empathy don’t have to be mutually exclusive.

    • christos99 - Jun 20, 2012 at 1:42 AM

      And I remember his 1992 Topps Gold Card would cover my college education…

    • mikecubbie69 - Jun 20, 2012 at 12:59 PM

      It is sad…. people getting cancer is TRAGIC………

  2. Louisville Kentucky Mortgage - Jun 19, 2012 at 4:53 PM

    I agree. Selling Cocaine is not sad, it is bad judgement.

    • mikecubbie69 - Jun 20, 2012 at 1:02 PM

      Its sad because he had all the talent in the world and threw it away, yes its bad judgement but thats what makes it sad.

  3. chill1184 - Jun 19, 2012 at 4:56 PM

    The drug war is pointless

  4. diablo19709 - Jun 19, 2012 at 4:59 PM


  5. seeinred87 - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:05 PM

    I forget where I read someone say it (either here or over at BP), but Brien Taylor really does have one of the saddest Wikipedia pages ever.

    The lowlight: “After retiring, Taylor moved to Raleigh, North Carolina and worked as a UPS package handler and later a beer distributor. He is the father of five daughters. By 2006, he had moved back home and was working as a bricklayer with his father. Taylor still lives with his parents, at the end of a street named after him, in a two-story brick and frame house that he built using his signing bonus.”

    It really is a shitty, heartbreaking story.

    • stlouis1baseball - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:10 PM

      UPS, Beer Distributor, Brick Layer…all fine occupations that pay quite well.
      In Taylor’s case…it appears that his Father employed him.
      This typically lends itself to someone being compensated even moreso than a typical brick layer.
      Regardless, I know someone in each profession and they do very well for themselves.

      • seeinred87 - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:15 PM

        I didn’t mean to say that there’s anything wrong with those jobs. But when you could’ve been a starting pitcher for the New York Yankees, I’ll bet it’s tough to view them the same way as someone without that talent and potential would.

      • jimbo75025 - Jun 20, 2012 at 12:15 AM

        In some cases yes, but I would wager that the UPS jobs was loading or unloading trucks and the beer distributor job would be the same. While there is nothing wrong with those jobs, they seldom pay much more than minimum wage and are manned pretty much exclusively by temp employees or in some cases even day laborers for seasonal spikes. The drivers/mgrs at both UPS and beer companies do indeed do quite well though.

    • stlouis1baseball - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:23 PM

      Point taken Red. An unfortunate (albeit very familiar) story.
      Now…he’s gonna’ “one up himself” and spend some lenghty time in the hoosegow.
      Too bad really.

  6. wherezwaldo - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:11 PM

    Cocaines a hell of a drug

  7. arrooo - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:16 PM

    Wasted talent

  8. beefytrout - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:19 PM

    Looks like Kirby Puckett.

    • drewsylvania - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:21 PM

      He kinda does, doesn’t he?

    • stlouis1baseball - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:33 PM

      Wow…Trout. He does sorta’ look like Kirby Puckett.

  9. drewsylvania - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:22 PM

    Selling coke means he’ll be getting put away for years.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jun 19, 2012 at 6:27 PM

      Being black and getting arrested for selling coke means he’ll be getting put away for years.

      Fixed that for you

      • dontcarewhatusay - Jun 19, 2012 at 7:09 PM

        Oh, yes, I’m sure it was a white person that put that old crack pipe in his mouth the first time. What an idiot.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jun 19, 2012 at 7:50 PM

        You know what the problem with arguing with morons is, they usually don’t know they are the dumb ones.

        When did I say that a white person put a crack pipe in his mouth? I said being black is an issue with drug offenses. And if you don’t realize this, you’re either extremely ignorant, extremely naive, or have been living in a cave somewhere the last 30 years.

      • Kevin S. - Jun 19, 2012 at 8:56 PM

        Especially considering that while sentencing for cocaine and crack distribution is essentially the same, sentencing for cocaine and crack usage is wildly different. Take a guess at which one is used more predominantly by rich white dudes…

      • churchoftheperpetualidiot - Jun 19, 2012 at 10:40 PM

        Lets cry for the poor black fellow. Another instance of the black race blaming everyone but themselves for their problems. Some people on here are such douchbags.

      • stlouis1baseball - Jun 20, 2012 at 12:53 PM

        Geesh Church. Your race baiting is getting real tired. Same ole’ crap.
        If you feel so bad/guilty…open up that check book and write a check to the “Great” Reverend Wright in Chicago, or perhaps Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson. They would be happy to receive said check and promptly deposit it into the “kill whitey” fund. Your welcome for me “fixing that for you.”
        Ohhh…waite…those “Gentlemen” can’t be racist can they? It only works one way.
        Again…your race baiting is tired.

    • dirtyharry1971 - Jun 19, 2012 at 10:23 PM

      But there is excellent money in the coke business, its really amazing the markup on that stuff

  10. pisano - Jun 19, 2012 at 6:02 PM

    As the old pisan’s say, ” you fu- k with the bull, you get the horns” too bad Brien, you could have been someone special.

  11. brewcrewfan54 - Jun 19, 2012 at 6:39 PM

    The sad part is that he was unable to accept being a normal person and working a normal job.

  12. dontcarewhatusay - Jun 19, 2012 at 7:11 PM

    Feel sorry?? No way! The idiot had a chance and he blew it. He gets what he deserves.

  13. randygnyc - Jun 20, 2012 at 1:58 AM

    I remember this Taylor kid well. I was in my mid twenties when he was drafted. He was supposed to be a future stud pitcher. His bonus was the highest ever. Shortly after, he got into a fistfight, alongside his brother, and decided he’d risk his entire future. He blew out his shoulder. It must have seemed natural, after blowing up his shoulder, that to make it outside of baseball, that he’d shoulder the rep for blowin up coke. He’s been busted many time for intending to traffic narcotics. He probably should be taught a lesson he’s not looking forward to learning. He lacks perspective.

  14. 11jlacy - Jun 20, 2012 at 8:04 AM

    What a waste

  15. rico7207 - Jun 20, 2012 at 11:28 AM

    Maybe Boston still wants him. Trade his rights!. Perfect fit!

  16. smallwoodenator - Jun 20, 2012 at 1:33 PM

    Now, maybe it’s me, because I’m a middle class guy who doesn’t mess with stuff like that. I realize I could get thrown into jail for a long time for selling cocaine or crack. I always wondered why EVERYONE doesn’t realize that eventually you will get caught and go to jail. It’s more of an issue about lifestyle, I think. Taylor realized that he won’t get rich laying bricks or being UPS guy. He’ll be forced to live a simple lifestyle. Too bad.

  17. rolltide1955a - Jun 20, 2012 at 4:48 PM

    he is sad and what happened to him is justice and shuold rot in jail

  18. rolltide1955a - Jun 20, 2012 at 4:51 PM

    he had the whole thing at his finger tips 1.55 million dollars and the chance to be better but was not willing to work got the money then did not put in the effort.. not sad just a fact of a lazy person

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