If ever a player and a ballpark were made for each other, Terry Puhl and the Astrodome were quite the pairing. A line drive hitter of the first order, Puhl sprayed extra base hits to all open areas of the cavernous Dome for 14 seasons (1977–90) as either a leadoff man or 2nd hole hitter for the run-and-gun Astros of that era. The dividends that unfolded included two Astros appearances in the 1980 and 1986
After 4 seasons in the Astros minor league farm system, Terry Puhl quickly earned a spot for himself in the every day lineup as a right fielder by rattling off a 17-game hitting streak. Blessed with great ability for positioning, speed afoot, natural athleticism, and a strong arm, Terry Puhl rapidly entrenched himself for a 14-year run with the Astros that was spent mostly in the lineup as the starting right fielder.
In 1978, Terry Puhl was selected for the All-Star Game. By 1980,
he was busy re-writing the record books by hitting .526 in a 5-game NLCS Astros loss to the Phillies. It was a record that would stand until 1989.
Over the years, National League baserunners learned to think twice about advancing from 1st to 3rd base on balls hit apparently safely to right field against the Astros. Enemy runners had to be sure that the crafty and speedy Puhl did not catch the ball for an easy double play throw to 1st. Then they had to be wary of Terry’s arm and its rifle-powered ability to nail even the fastest runner taking 3rd base for granted. By career’s end, Terry Puhl had compiled an amazing record fielding average of .993! It is a record that still stands for Major League outfielders with a minimum of 1,000 games.
In 1995, Terry Puhl was inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame, and tonight it is our great pleasure to welcome this fine former Astros star into his much-deserved place in the Texas Baseball Hall of Fame. Welcome aboard, Terry! We’re glad to have you here, where you richly deserve to be.
* Highest career fielding average (.993) (min. 1000 games)
* 1980—Set 5-game NLCS BA record (.526) beaten by TBHOFer Will Clark (.650 in ‘89)
* MLB record for most career hits and games played by a Canadian
* All-Star: 1978
* 1995—Inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame