Richard Anthony Lancellotti was born on July 5, 1956 in Providence, Rhode Island. Lancellotti was an outfielder / first baseman, drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates 13th round in 1977. In 1979 he was the Eastern League MVP hitting 41 HRs with 107 RBIs at Buffalo.
He went on to have a successful minor league career that lasted 13 seasons, with stops in the majors, and other parts of the world. He would win three HR titles in the minors leagues, slugging 276 HRs & 482 RBIs overall batting .252. His MLB career was very brief, making a 17 game appearance for the Padres in 1982 but he only hit .179 & was sent back down.
Just prior to the 1985 season, Lancellotti was traded to the New York Mets for Rusty Tillman. He hit 10 HRs in 91 games for the AAA Tidewater Tides, but only batted .180 and was traded.
In 1986 after leading the Pacific Coast League in Hrs he was promoted to the San Francisco Giants where he hit the only 2 HRs in his MLB career, batting .222 in 15 games. The next two seasons he went to Japan & played for the Hiroshima Toyo Carp. He won another HR title there, hitting 39 in 1987 and 58 over the two seasons, but his average was only .207. He accused his manager of trying to lose games, by not using pinch hitters late in the game, when it was learned the manager would not return the next year.
He went to the Japanese media with the story, and the team threatened not to pay him. He was eventually paid off to say iy was all a misunderstanding. He got out of Japan & went to the short lioved Senior Professional League where he won another HR title.
He went back to the minors playing for Pawtucket, and in 1990 after hitting 10 HRs was promoted to the Red Sox for four games, going 0-8. In 1991 he won yet another HR title at Pawtucket.
Soon, Boston Globe reporter made a huge mistake, writing that Lancelloti had broken the all time minor league HR record. He made appearances on CNN, in Sports Illustrated & USA Today but no one ever bothered to check the actual record. Everyone assumed it was 255 the figure used in the movie Bull Durham!
In 1992 Lancelloti went to Italy & played in the Serie 1 baseball league for the Cariparma Angels. "It was a nice way to go out. They only played twice a week, practiced for about an hour on three days, and gave us the other two days off." He also said he loved the food. He finally hung up his spikes in 1993 and started a baseball school in Buffalo New York. He was inducted into the Buffalo Hall of Fame the next year.