Saturday, June 15, 2013

Happy Baseball Birthday...Tony Clark

Today's Happy Baseball Birthday! is former Detroit Tigers 1st Baseman Tony Clark.

Tony Clark was born on June 15th, 1972, in Newton, Kansas, and played high school baseball and basketball in San Diego, California.

We was a two sport star at San Diego Sate University when the Tigers came calling.

The Tigers selected Clark with their #1 pick, (2nd overall), in the 1990 Amateur Draft, and signed Tony on July 10, 1990.

Clark made his big league debut on September 3rd, 1995, and after the Tigers traded Cecil Fielder to the Yankees in 1996, the first base job was his.

In 27 games after his call- up Tony hit 3 home runs, with 11 RBI in 109 plate appearances.

Tony Clark is one of my favorite Tiger first baseman.

I had the chance to see the Tigers play in Tampa a few times when Tony was with the team.

Opening Day 1998, I sat high up in the stands at Tropicana Field as the Tigers welcomed the then Tampa Bay Devil Rays into big league baseball with a 11-6 Detroit victory, as Clark went 2-5 with 2 runs scored.

I still have this thing, handed out at the game.

I was also in Tampa on August 1st, 1998, as Tony  hit two home RH, one LH, against the Devil Rays, his 24th and 25th long balls of the year, in a Tigers 8-0 shutout.

Tony Clark hit home runs from both sides of the plate 7 times, 6 times as a member of the Tigers, beginning with his 2-dinger game at Comiskey Park in Chicago on April 5th, 1997.

The game I attended in '98 was one of three times that season that Tony hit home runs from both sides of the plate.

For seven big league seasons Tony Clark hit 156 home runs for the Tigers, with 514 RBI, a .277 batting average, 783 hits...343 772 games with Detroit.

Tony's best seasons in Motown were 1996-99, when he hit 27, 32,34, and 31 home runs, and collected 72, 117, 103, and 99 RBI.

Tony played with the Tigers through the 2001 season, then moved on to play with the Red Sox, Diamondbacks, Mets, Yankees, and Padres.

In 2005 Tony had another 30 HR season, as a member of the Diamondbacks, collecting 87 RBI while batting a career high .304.

In 15 big league baseball seasons, Tony played in 1.559 games, collected 1,188 base hits, 251 home runs, 824 RBI, with a .262 batting average.

Happy Baseball Birthday!  to Tony "The Tiger" Clark!

Play Ball!

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