Reggie Sanders (sandere01)

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Reginald Jerome Sanders

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Biographical Information[edit]

For a month in 1974, Reggie Sanders was the regular first baseman for the Detroit Tigers. Bill Freehan, usually a catcher, had been playing a lot of first base, and when Reggie came up he took over at the position. Sanders homered in his major league debut.

Reggie is not to be confused with the later Reggie Sanders.

He was born in Birmingham, AL in 1949. Oscar Gamble and Andre Thornton were also born in Alabama that same year. He was drafted by the Chicago White Sox from the Atlanta Braves in the 1977 Rule V Draft.

Sanders played 10 seasons in the minors, mostly as a first baseman but also appearing in the outfield and infield at times. He had at least 156 home runs in the minors, pretty regularly hitting in double figures each year. He played in the Mexican League in 1977.

Reggie's stats in the majors were decent enough for a rookie: .273/.308/.434. The team averages that year were much lower at .247/.303/.366. However, in 1975 manager Ralph Houk went with a committee at first base for the Tigers: Nate Colbert, who was acquired in a trade in the off-season, played in 44 games before being sent away; Jack Pierce was in 49 games and Dan Meyer in 46 games,, and other players including Bill Freehan in fewer than 15. Sanders was traded to Atlanta for Pierce right before the start of the 1975 season, and while Pierce played in the majors, Sanders was with the AAA Richmond Braves. Atlanta used Earl Williams as its regular first baseman. Williams hit .240 with 11 home runs while Sanders in Richmond hit .265 with 14 home runs on a team whose batting average was .249.

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