By Marhea Pease
Luke Daniel Hamlin aka “Hot Potato Hamlin” was a right-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball for 9 years with the Detroit Tigers (1933–34), Brooklyn Dodgers (1937–41), Pittsburgh Pirates (1942), and Philadelphia Athletics (1944).
According to the National Baseball Hall of Fame his best year was 1939 when he went 20–13 and had 10 complete games in 269-2/3 innings pitched. Hamlin’s 20 wins was 4th best in the National League, his WHIP was 1.146 (3rd in the NL), and he also finished #10 in the National League Most Valuable Player voting in 1939. He had another strong year in 1940 with a 3.06 earned run average for an Adjusted ERA+ of 131 (4th best in the NL). He was also #1 in the National League in 1940 with a strikeout to walk ratio of 2.68.
Hamlin was a prominent member of the community in Lake George establishing its local baseball team. The Luke Hamlin baseball field was dedicated in Lake George, Michigan in 1972. Hamlin passed in 1978 at the age of 73 in Clare, Michigan.
Since then the field has become rundown and debilitated over time. Not many people use the area as it is outside of the town. Carol Majewski Clerk of the Lincoln Township says that the park will be funded for two more years and then unfortunately let go.
Hamlin field is actually rented off of Trans Canada and because it is not owned by the township repairs and funding cannot go towards it. Because it is not owned and there is no use coming from it costs have to be cut. Residents and fans of Hamlin were talking about revitalizing this space but nothing has been determined.