1974 | DETROIT, MICHIGAN – Chicago White Sox slugger Dick Allen hit one of the longest home runs ever hit on this date in 1974. Allen was facing the Detroit Tigers’ Dave Lemanczyk in the 5th inning when he hit a mammoth fly ball that struck the façade of the roof in left-center field at Tiger Stadium. Players and fans who witnessed the shot said it was still rising when it hit the roof, not likely, but still estimated to have traveled over 500 feet. The façade was 415 from home plate, 85 feet in the air.
Dick Allen, early in his career he was called “Richie,” came out of the gate strong, winning National League Rookie of the Year honors for the Philadelphia Phillies in 1964.
His personality would prove to be as impactful as his bat. He had his share of verbal and physical altercations and suspensions. His relationship with sportswriters was contentious. He made life interesting for his managers, which is probably why he was traded five times in 15 years.
Regardless of his colorful personality, Dick Allen had talent. Besides Rookie of the Year, he was the American League’s Most Valuable Player in 1972 and twice led the American league in home runs. He finished a 15-year career with a .292 average, 351 home runs, 1,199 runs batted in and 1,099 runs scored.
July 6, 1974 box score/play-by-play