Almost Yesterday: Tim Lollar Makes MLB Debut

Mar 30, 2021

It seems like Almost Yesterday that a young man from Farmington, Missouri, walked on to the pitcher’s mound in New York’s Yankee Stadium for the first game in his major league baseball career.  It was Saturday, June 28, 1980, when twenty-four year old Tim Lollar pitched the seventh and eighth innings against the Cleveland Indians, a game the Yankees won, eleven to ten.

This game began a seven year, one-hundred ninety-nine game career by Lollar, who was born in Poplar Bluff, Missouri in 1956.  Lollar was familiar with major league baseball, having watched his father, Sherm Lollar, seventeen years a major leaguer.

Following the completion of the second grade, Tim Lollar’s youth was spent in Farmington, Missouri, where he emerged as a talented player in bantam, midget, and Babe Ruth competition.  At the age of sixteen he began playing American Legion Baseball, and attracted the attention of major league scouts.

Upon graduation from high school, Lollar played at Mineral Area Community College and then the University of Arkansas, where as a college senior he won nine games as a pitcher and All-American honors as a designated batter.

Following his initial year with the Yankees, Lollar was traded to the San Diego Padres, where he had his greatest success in 1982 winning 16 games while losing only 9.

The 1984 Padres team was one of the most memorable of the modern era, defeating the Chicago Cubs in the National League playoffs before losing to the Detroit Tigers in the World Series.

While complications with an elbow forced Lollar into early retirement in 1986, the young man Farmington, Missouri had an impressive career.