National sporting icon Anthony ‘Poker’ Huyler was laid to rest on Saturday afternoon. The following is a tribute to him from the ‘Cabbage Patch’ – a group of his closest friends.
Throughout his life, Bahamian sportsman Anthony ‘Poker’ Huyler united people, but, ultimately, his declining health led to his eventual demise.
He was an affiliate, supporter and player, and played huge roles in the Barons/Raiders, Spotless Cleaners/Budweiser Eagles and Cougars/Colonels rivalries. He participated in softball and baseball and was a huge supporter of the Cougars, in basketball. Through it all, differences were put aside.
One may wish to call him ‘Poker’, ‘Bud’ or ‘Two-Four’. Huyler was a gifted and tremendous athlete; more so, a fine human being. History will be kind to him for his outstanding accomplishments in softball and baseball, as he will go down as one of the best that graced both disciplines. From his playing days on the Beck’s Bees, the Fanta Raiders, the Batelco Radars and the Spotless Cleaners, on to his participation as a manager and coach in the Old Timers Softball Association, Huyler made a significant contribution.
Sometimes overlooked were Huyler’s leadership skills, as would be highlighted as the lead-off batter throughout his career and a ‘daredevil’ on the bases, along with his innate ability to assemble talent, especially from his beloved McQuay Street. He lured other childhood friends to come on board.
He contributed to the international feats of The Bahamas’ national softball teams, accomplishing regional and world status, so much so, that the Commonwealth of The Bahamas was rated third in the entire world during his time.
Huyler was inducted into the Bahamas’ National Sports Hall of Fame in 2016.
Noted journalist Fred Sturrup once articulated in his renowned Sports Scope column: “Let’s focus a bit on the character called Anthony “Poker/Bud” Huyler. Only Roy Rodgers could compare with Huyler’s expertise at first base. They were better than most I’ve seen in the major leagues.”
In a nutshell, that sums up Huyler’s ability in softball and baseball. Your legacy lives on ‘Poker’, ‘Bud’, ‘Two-Four’.
‘The Cabbage Patch’ would like to extend its heartfelt condolences to his wife Annalee, his children, grandchildren, father Basil, brothers, and rest of his family and friends.
Condolences from ‘The Cabbage Patch’ come from Rodwell ‘Cabbage’ Thompson, Sharon ‘The General’ Storr, ‘Farmer’ Demerrite, Eddie Clare, Willie ‘Capone’ Knowles, Vianney Jacques, ‘Bowe’ Davis, ‘Goose’ Curry, Bob Miller, ‘Abaco’ Roberts, ‘Buddy’ ‘Farmer’ Seymour, Stephen ‘Garbo’ Coakley, Deckery Johnson and the others who are a part of ‘The Cabbage Patch’.