Tiger Baseball to Retire Jersey of Charlie Lea on Sunday at FedExPark
May 2, 2012
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - University of Memphis baseball head coach Daron Schoenrock announced Wednesday that the Tiger baseball program will retire the jersey of the late Charlie Lea on Sunday in a ceremony before the series finale against UAB at FedExPark.
"We are very honored to do this for Charlie and his family," Schoenrock said. "We're so glad that his wife, Lou, and sons, Brian and Matt, are going to be in attendance. Charlie was one of the most celebrated players in Memphis history and he continued that success on the major league level. He was very involved with youth baseball and the Memphis Redbirds and that made him a household name in Shelby County baseball."
In his lone season as a Tiger hurler, Lea helped the 1978 squad to a 40-9 record and a Metro Conference Championship. Inducted into the M Club Hall of Fame in 1984, Lea posted a 9-2 record as a junior and threw 7.2 strong innings to pick up a win in the 1978 NCAA Baseball Tournament, as Memphis knocked off North Carolina, 8-6. In one season with the Tigers, Lea set the school record for appearances (19) by a pitcher in a single season, most innings pitched (97 2/3) in a single season and most saves (5) recorded in a single season. Lea posted a no-hitter against Arkansas-Little Rock during the 1978 baseball season.
Born on Christmas Day in Orleans, France, in 1956, Lea was selected in the ninth round of the 1978 Major League Baseball amateur draft by the Montreal Expos and played for the Expos' affiliate in his hometown. Lea went 9-0 with a 0.84 earned-run average with the Double-A Memphis Chicks in 1980 before making his major league debut with the Expos in June.
Winner of 62 games in a career that ended with Minnesota in 1988, Lea pitched a no-hitter against San Francisco in 1981 and was the starting and winning pitcher for the National League in the 1984 All-Star Game.
Sunday's jersey retirement ceremony will begin around 12:40 at FedExPark.