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Former Tiger Champ Summers dies at 66

Champ Summers, who hit 40 home runs in parts of three seasons for the Tigers from 1979-81, has died.

Ocala, Fla. (AP) — Outfielder and first baseman Champ Summers, who hit 40 home runs in parts of three seasons for the Tigers from 1979-81, has died at age 66.


Summers' wife, Joy, said he passed away Thursday after a 2.5-year battle with kidney cancer.


Starting in 1974, Summers played 10 seasons in the majors for six different teams.


His wife said Thursday his favorite team was the Tigers.


"He stayed there the longest, and he loved the fans," Joy Summers said.


Summers also played for the Athletics, Cubs, Reds, Giants and Padres. He later spent time as a hitting coach for the Yankees.


Summers finished his MLB career with a .255 batting average, 54 home runs and 218 RBIs. A native of Bremerton, Wash., he played in the majors from 1974-84.