Don Lund

From BR Bullpen

140 pix

Donald Andrew Lund

BR page

Biographical Information[edit]

Outfielder Don Lund earned nine letters at the University of Michigan and was also drafted by the Chicago Bears. After his playing career ended, he was a Detroit Tigers coach in 1957 and 1958. He was then the Tigers' farm director in 1963, Scouting director in 1964, and director of player development from 1965 to 1970.

He signed with the Brooklyn Dodgers out of college in 1945, foregoing a career in professional football. While he made his big league debut that same season, most of the period 1945-1947 was spent in the minor leagues, principally with the St. Paul Saints and Mobile Bears. The young Lund attracted attention in 1947, a pennant-winning year for the Dodgers, when he went 6 for 20, slugging .700 with 2 doubles and 2 homers. He did not appear in post-season play, however. Lund was one of 11 players used in left field by the Dodgers that season, who never did pick a regular left-fielder in the late 1940s.

He started the 1948 season with Brooklyn, but played little and was claimed off waivers by the St. Louis Browns at the end of June. But he could not crack the Browns' starting line-up either, accumulating only 161 at-bats with the team, during which he hit .248, during the rest of the 1948 season. The Browns also gave up on him, and sold him to the Detroit Tigers in January of 1949. However, he only played two games in the big leagues that year, going back to the minors with the Toledo Mud Hens for three full seasons, and then with the Buffalo Bisons in 1952. He hit at least 16 homers and 22 doubles each of those four seasons, but still couldn't get another shot at the majors. Finally, after hitting .302 in addition to his extra-base power in 1952, he was given a late-season look by the Tigers, hitting .304. His year with the most major league at-bats was 1953, when he hit .257 in 421 at-bats with the Tigers. Al Kaline was an 18-year-old rookie that year, and the following year Kaline became a regular, while Lund was a back-up. He hit only .130 in 35 games in 1954 and finished the season with the Minneapolis Millers before calling it quits as a player.

Lund briefly managed the 1956 Jamestown Falcons. He returned to his alma mater as head coach from 1959 to 1962, leading the school to the 1962 College World Series.

In 2009, St. James Books published his biography, "Playing Ball With Legends: The Story and Stories of Don Lund" [1], written by James Robert Irwin. Lund passed away from natural causes at his home in a retirement community in Ann Arbor, MI on December 10, 2013, at the age of 90.

Further Reading[edit]

  • James Robert Irwin: Playing Ball With Legends: The Story and the Stories of Don Lund, Saint James Books, Ann Arbor, MI, 2009.

Related Sites[edit]