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Alan Trammell

From Academic Kids

Alan Stuart Trammell (born February 21, 1958 in Garden Grove, California) is the current manager of the Detroit Tigers in the American League.

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Alan_Trammell.jpg
Last at-bat at Tiger Stadium - though he did return and get a few more the next year

From 1977 through 1996, Trammell, known throughout his career as "Tram" to Tiger fans, had a successful playing career with Detroit, highlighted by a World Series championship in 1984 and an American League East division championship in 1987.

One of the best defensive shortstops in the 1980s, Trammell had good range, soft hands and was smooth turning the double play. Despite the fact that his arm wasn't overpowering, Trammell had a quick release and made accurate throws. Trammell's solid, steady defense perfectly complimented that of his double play partner, Lou Whitaker, with whom Trammell formed the most enduring keystone-combination in Major League history.

After growing in the field in his first four seasons, Trammell batted .300 in 1980 as he made the All-Star team for first time. 1983 was a true break-out season for Trammell, as he hit .314 with 14 home runs, 66 runs batted in and 30 stolen bases.

Trammell, along with his Tiger teammates, enjoyed a dream season in 1984. Despite suffering from tendinitis in his shoulder, which caused him to miss 43 regular season games, he finished fifth in AL batting race with .314 and ranked eighth in on base percentage. In the ALCS against the Kansas City Royals, Trammell hit .364 with one home run and three RBI. Then, in the World Series he was 9-for-20 against the San Diego Padres, including pair of two-run home runs that accounted for all of Tigers' runs in a Game 4 Detroit victory.

Detroit won the series 4-1 and Trammell was given the World Series MVP Award.

In 1985, after two consecutive years not lower than .314, Trammell was hampered by injuries, and posted only a .258 batting average. He underwent postseason surgery on left knee for second time and on right shoulder.

Trammell returned with new energies in 1986. He became only second player in Detroit history to hit 20 homers and steal 20 bases in a season. Kirk Gibson is the other. Trammell also set a career-high with 75 RBI.

In 1987, asked by manager Sparky Anderson to bat cleanup, Trammell responded with his best career season. On September, he batted .416 with six homers and 17 RBI, putting together an 18-game hitting streak in which he hit a .457, helping his team to win the AL East division by a single game on the last day of the season. He became the first Tiger to collected 200 hits and 100 RBI in the same season since Al Kaline did it in 1955. Beside this, he appeared in most AL offensive categories: third in batting average (.343), tenth in RBI (105), third in hits (205), tied for fifth in runs (109), fourth in total bases (329), fifth in on base percentage (.402), eighth in slugging average (.551), and tied for fifth in game-winning RBI (16). Despite his efforts, Trammell finished second to Toronto's George Bell in the MVP voting (332-311), which is considered by many one of the most controverted decisions in award history.

The following years Trammell suffered a long string of injuries that slowed his production both at bat and on the field. In 1991 he was limited to 101 games because of knee and ankle injuries. It was even worse in 1992. He got into only 29 games before broken his right ankle losing the rest of the season. His days as a regular shortstop for Detroit were close to being over. After two sub-par seasons, he retired in 1996.

In 20-year career Trammell batted .285, with 185 home runs, 1003 RBI, 1231 runs, 2365 hits, 412 doubles, 55 triples, and 236 stolen bases in 2293 games. After finishing his playing career, Trammell served as a coach for Detroit (1998-99) and the Padres (2000-02). On October 9, 2002, he was named the new Tigers' manager.

Highlights

  • 6-time All-Star (1980, 1984-85, 1987-88, 1990)
  • 4-time Gold Glove (1980-81, 1983-84)
  • 3-time Top 10 MVP (1984, 1987-88)
  • 5-time Top 10 in batting average (1983-84, 1987-88, 1990)
  • Collected both 200th hit of season and 1,500th career in same at bat (October 1, 1987)
  • Along with teammate Lou Whitaker tied a AL record playing together (1,914 games; August 30, 1995). They also set the major league record by turning more double plays that any other short-stop, second baseman combination in the long history of professional baseball.
  • The Trammell-Whitaker duo won twice Gold Gloves, joining a select list of eight shortstop-second baseman duos have won the honor in the same season while playing together (1983-84)

See also

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