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Dante Bichette

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Dante Bichette

A photo of Dante Bichette.

Alphonse Dante Bichette (Template:PronEng, born November 18, 1963 in West Palm Beach, Florida) is a former American Major League Baseball player.

He began his career with the California 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. It was with the Rockies where he shined as a player. At least some of his slugging success can be attributed to the home run-friendly ballparks in Denver, Mile High Stadium and Coors Field. The dry air in the Colorado capital made the baseball drier and harder, and thus able to travel much further upon contact, though an unusually expansive outfield was included in the design of Coors Field as a mitigating and equalizing factor against the dry air.

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, respectively. He remains in the top ten in many offensive categories for the Rockies.[1] 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. It took little time for Bichette to play back into form as he 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, eight RBIs and his first professional save.

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 in Tanner Stanley, son of Mike Stanley.

In 1992, Bichette admitted to hitting his pregnant girlfriend.[1]

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External links Edit

Awards and achievements
Preceded by:
Jeff Conine
Mike Piazza
Jeff Bagwell
National League Player of the Month
July 1995
September 1995
June 1996
Succeeded by:
Mike Piazza
Barry Bonds
Sammy Sosa
Preceded by:
Matt Williams
National League Home Run Champion
1995
Succeeded by:
Andrés Galarraga
Preceded by:
Jeff Bagwell
National League RBI Champion
1995
Succeeded by:
Andrés Galarraga
Preceded by:
Jeff Bagwell
National League Slugging Percentage Champion
1995
Succeeded by:
Ellis Burks

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