Detroit Tigers: 20 Best Hitters in the Last 30 Years
Jun 30, 2015; Detroit, MI, USA; The bat of Detroit Tigers center fielder
(20) stand by home plate against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
5. Lance Parrish
Detroit Tigers fans are eternally grateful that Lance Parrish did not accept the scholarship to UCLA to play football. Instead, he decided to enter the baseball draft where the Tigers nabbed him in the first round. He played 10 years with the Tigers where he was selected to six All-Star Games and won five Silver Slugger awards and three Gold Glove awards. Despite the fact that he played eight seasons with other teams, he has remained one of the most popular Tigers players in recent history.
His love of working out with weights helped him with his performance on offense. In his first All-Star season, he hit .286 with 24 home runs. In 1982, he hit 32 home runs and had an OPS of .867. During the World Series season, he 33 home runs and 98 RBIs. As one of the strongest players on the team, he batted clean up in 1984. One of his greatest defensive games was catching for Jack Morris in the April 7, 1984 no-hitter.
During his 1982 season, he set a new AL home runs record for a catcher which was previously held by Yogi Berra. In 1984, he increased the record by two. He hit a total of 324 home runs and 1070 RBIs. He was intentionally walked 62 times. He was a quiet, but imposing leader of the 1984 World Series team with his ability to keep the pitchers on target and to put the strikes thrown at him into play.