Sept. 2, 1970: Gene Lamont’s Big Debut

On this date in 1970, Tigers catcher (and current third base coach) Gene Lamont hit a home run in his first big-league at bat in a 10-1 loss to the Red Sox at Fenway Park. The left-handed hitting Lamont hit his shot off Boston’s Cal Koonce, capping a 2-for-3 night.

Lamont, the Tigers’ first-round pick (#13) in the 1965 amateur draft, played five seasons in the big leagues, all with Detroit.

He appeared in 23 games from 1970 through ’72, 60 games in ’74 and just four in his final season, 1975. (According to his bio on the Tigers Web site, Lamont spent the 1973 season in the Braves organization.) He played in the Tigers’ minor-league system through 1977.

Final career line:

  • 87 games
  • .233 average
  • 4 HR
  • 14 RBI
  • 1 stolen base

Here’s how Lamont’s post-playing career came together, again from his bio on Tigers.com:

Prior to joining Jim Leyland’s coaching staff in Pittsburgh in 1986, he spent eight seasons (1978-85) as a manager in the Kansas City Royals organization.

If a guy’s not going to enjoy a long career in the majors, it’s nice to see them at least make a splash during their abbreviated stay.

P.S. On Sept. 2 three years later, the Tigers fired Billy Martin.

Author: Mike McClary

Upbeat guy.

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