SAGINAW COUNTY SPORTS HALL OF FAME
CLASS OF 2002
The pride of Zilwaukee got his start at St. Andrew’s High School where he played football, basketball and baseball for the Bulldogs. The stocky 5-9, 175-pound halfback earned all-state and All-American honors in football in 1956. He racked up a whopping 27 touchdowns that season, including five six-pointers in a 65-19 victory over rival-SS. Peter & Paul. Luplow also was tabbed as the Outstanding Player of the Year in ‘56 in a poll of sportswriters and coaches throughout the state. He attended Michigan State on a football scholarship and the Spartans allowed him to play both football and baseball. With only two more weekends of baseball left with the Spartans in 1959, Luplow left Michigan State and signed a $35,000 bonus contract with the Cleveland Indians. Duffy Daugherty, head football coach for Michigan State, was disappointed because he believed Luplow would have developed into an exceptional defensive back in professional football. After leaving the Spartans he played two months with Batavia in his first year of pro ball where he compiled a .300 average in the Class D New York-Penn State league. He was named to the league’s all-star team. In 1960, he split his time between Class A Reading, Pa, and Class AA Mobile, Al. He made the all-star team in the Eastern League with Reading. One year later Luplow was named to the All-Pacific Coast League team while at Salt Lake City where he battled .302 with 17 homers and leading the league with 16 triples and total bases. He was called up to the parent club to finish the regular major league season. Luplow’s first major league homer was a two-run shot off of veteran hurler Bill Monbouquette of the Boston Red Sox. He had an outstanding rookie campaign with the Indians, flirting with a .300 average most of the season before settling for a .277 mark. Always considered a solid outfielder because of his speed and aggressive play, he made national headlines with several outstanding acrobatic catches, including one against the Red Sox that was featured in Sports illustrated. His seven-major league career with the Indians, New York Mets and Pittsburgh Pirates saw him club 33 home runs, six triples and 34 doubles for a career average of .235.