January 13, 1940 |
Los Angeles, California
|May 26, 1963, for the Pittsburgh Pirates|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 25, 1971, for the Montreal Expos|
Brand originally signed with the Pittsburgh Pirates as an amateur free agent, and spent five seasons in their farm system before debuting with the big league club in 1963. He hit his first major league home run on June 20, off Denny Lemaster of the Milwaukee Braves. After spending all of 1964 in the minors, Brand was selected by the Houston Colt .45s in the 1964 rule 5 draft.
In 1965, the Colt .45s moved into their new domed stadium team owner Judge Roy Hofheinz dubbed the Astrodome (named in honor of Houston's importance to the country's space program). To match with the meaning of the name, the Colt .45s were renamed the Astros.
John Bateman was the opening day starting catcher in 1965, however, he soon lost his starting job to Brand. On August 18, Brand hit his second home run of the season, and the third of his career. He never hit another major league home run.
In 1966, Bateman won back the starting catcher job, and Brand became the back-up. They split catching duties pretty evenly in 1967, but Brand began the 1968 season with the Astros' Pacific Coast League triple A affiliate, the Oklahoma City 89ers, and only appeared in 29 games behind the plate for the Astros.
On October 14, 1968, Bateman was drafted by the Montreal Expos as the sixth overall pick in the 1968 Major League Baseball expansion draft; 52 picks later, the Expos selected Brand, and the two resumed their platoon in Montreal.
This platoon only lasted one season as in 1970 Brand assumed more of a utility infielder role. In 1971, Brand only caught two innings, however, made 22 appearances at shortstop. He spent all of 1972 with the Expos' triple A affiliate, the Peninsula Whips, and was released at the end of the season. He joined the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1975, and spent the entire season in Bakersfield, California as player/manager of their California League affiliate before retiring.