October 18, 1919|
Oak Park, Illinois
|Died: June 2, 2016
Carol Stream, Illinois
|April 21, 1945, for the Brooklyn Dodgers|
|Last MLB appearance|
|July 5, 1945, for the Brooklyn Dodgers|
|Earned run average||5.20|
Pfund was born in Oak Park, Illinois. On November 1, 1944 he was drafted by the Brooklyn Dodgers from the St. Louis Cardinals in the 1944 rule 5 draft, and played for the Dodgers in 1945. The 25-year-old rookie right-hander stood 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m) and weighed 185 lb (84 kg). Pfund was one of many ballplayers who only appeared in the major leagues during World War II. He made his major league debut in relief against the New York Giants at the Polo Grounds on April 21, 1945, when professional baseball teams conducted spring training in the north. His first major league win came in his first start, on May 14, 1945, as the Dodgers defeated the Pittsburgh Pirates 4–1 at Ebbets Field.
Season and career totals for 15 games include a 3–2 record, 10 games started, 2 complete games, 2 games finished, and an ERA of 5.20 in 62.1 innings pitched. Pfund went 4-for-22 (.182) in batting with a double and 2 walks, had 4 runs batted in and scored 2 runs. Even though he pitched 62.1 innings in 1945, Pfund tied for ninth among National League hurlers with 5 hit batsmen. By contrast, it took the other five pitchers who were tied with him for ninth an average of 191.2 innings to hit the same number of batters.
Lee was employed at Wheaton College in Wheaton, Illinois for nearly 39 years, as a professor of physical education, baseball coach, basketball coach, and executive director of the Alumni Association (1975–87). Pfund was the winningest coach in Wheaton history for both men's basketball and baseball. In 1977, he received the Distinguished Service to Alma Mater award from the Wheaton Alumni Association. In 1985, he was inducted into the Wheaton Athletics Department's Hall of Honor. In the opening weeks of each season every year since 1996, the Wheaton men's basketball program has hosted the Lee Pfund Classic basketball tournament. In 2000, Lee Pfund Gymnasium opened as a practice and recreation space in the Sports and Recreation Complex on the Wheaton campus. In April 2012, Lee Pfund Stadium – outfitted with lights, new dugouts, a new backstop, and artificial turf – opened in Carol Stream, Illinois, where it is the home of the Wheaton baseball program. On April 30, 2016, Pfund's jersey number 17 — the number he wore as skipper of the baseball team at Wheaton — was retired.
Pfund was inducted into the Illinois State Basketball Coaches Association “Hall of Fame”. He died on June 2, 2016 at the age of 96. Pfund's son, Randy, was the head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers and later general manager of the Miami Heat.
- "Wheaton College Remembers Former Coach and Administrator Le Roy (Lee) Pfund '49 (1919-2016)". Retrieved June 5, 2016.
- Legendary Wheaton College coach remembered for sportsmanship, faith, updated: 6/5/2016 9:56 PM, accessed 6/6/2016
- "Lee Pfund Stadium at Legion Field". Retrieved June 5, 2016.
- "Lee Pfund Classic". Retrieved June 5, 2016.
- Herald, Special to the Daily (June 3, 2016). "Wheaton College legend Pfund dies". Retrieved June 5, 2016.
- Career statistics and player information from MLB, or Baseball-Reference, or Baseball-Reference (Minors)
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