||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (May 2010)|
|Right fielder / Left fielder|
November 18, 1963 |
West Palm Beach, Florida
|September 5, 1988, for the California Angels|
|Last MLB appearance|
|October 6, 2001, for the Boston Red Sox|
|Runs batted in||1,141|
|Career highlights and awards|
Alphonse Dante Bichette, Sr. (/ /; born November 18, 1963) is a former professional baseball player. He played in Major League Baseball as an outfielder for the California Angels (1988–1990), Milwaukee Brewers (1991–1992), Colorado Rockies (1993–1999), Cincinnati Reds (2000), and Boston Red Sox (2000–2001). He was also the hitting coach for the Rockies in 2013.
Bichette made his MLB debut with the Angels in 1988, but was a streaky hitter and was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers in 1991. After putting up only average numbers with Milwaukee, he was traded to the new expansion team, the Colorado Rockies. On April 7, 1993 he hit the first home-run in Rockies history, a solo shot off of New York Mets pitcher Bret Saberhagen. Bichette was part of the "Blake Street Bombers" which also included sluggers Larry Walker, Andrés Galarraga, and Vinny Castilla. During his time in Colorado, his at-bat music was Sledgehammer by Peter Gabriel.
He finished the Rockies' first season with 21 home runs and a .310 batting average, his personal best for both at the time. Bichette also hit his first home run at the newly constructed Coors Field, a fourteenth-inning smash against the Mets that secured an opening day victory for the Rockies in 1995. Bichette had his best season in 1995, coming very close to the Triple Crown with a .340 batting average, 40 home runs and 128 RBIs and barely lost the MVP voting to the Cincinnati Reds' Barry Larkin.
Bichette began having knee problems in 1996, but was still successful as a hitter, with a .316 average, 31 home runs and 141 RBIs, plus 31 stolen bases. The 1996 season was only the second time ever that two players on the same team hit at least 30 home runs and collected 30 stolen bases, as Ellis Burks accomplished the same feat. Over the next three seasons, Bichette hit 26, 22 and 34 home runs for the Rockies. He remains in the top ten in many offensive categories for the Rockies. But by the end of the 1999 season, his production was beginning to drop and the Rockies dealt Bichette to the Cincinnati Reds. However, his fielding was suffering tremendously and Bichette was eventually traded to the Boston Red Sox for a season and a half and then the Los Angeles Dodgers. Bichette retired before ever playing a game with the Dodgers on March 22, 2002.
In August 2004, Bichette rejoined professional baseball as a pitcher and first baseman for the Atlantic League's Nashua Pride. Bichette won the Atlantic League's Player of the Month award for August (his first full month back). He completed the month with a .361 average and 13 homers. On August 28, he batted 4-for-5 with two home runs and eight RBIs.
In August 2005, Bichette's son Dante Bichette, Jr. participated in the Little League World Series with his Maitland, Florida team. The Maitland team featured a second son of a former major-leaguer is Tanner Stanley who currently plays for University of Richmond, son of Mike Stanley. In 2011, Bichette, Jr., was drafted 51st overall in Comp Round A by the New York Yankees, who are managed by Bichette, Sr.'s close friend Joe Girardi.
- Career statistics and player information from MLB, or ESPN, or Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or The Baseball Cube, or Baseball-Reference (Minors)
- Little League World Series 2005 Coach Photograph
|National League Player of the Month
|National League Slugging Percentage Champion