All-Time MLB Players From Lafayette: Joe Fontenot
There have been a number of individuals from Lafayette, and the Acadiana area, that have played in Major League Baseball over the years.
Obviously, the entire state of Louisiana has produced even more.
As a matter of fact, 246 people born in the state of Louisiana have appeared in a Major League Baseball game, beginning in 1874, with John Peters of New Orleans, who played 11 years, with the likes of the Chicago White Stockings, Milwaukee Grays, Providence Grays, Buffalo Bisons, and Pittsburgh Alleghenys.
All summer, we’ll preview a player from the state of Louisiana that appeared in Major League baseball, starting with players from Lafayette, before spotlighting players from the Acadiana area, and then a few from the state itself.
Today, we feature Joe Fontenot.
Born in Scott in 1977, Fontenot, a right-handed pitcher, played one season in Major League Baseball, in 1998, becoming the eighth person born in the Lafayette area to appear in the big leagues.
After playing his high school baseball at Acadiana High School, Fontenot was drafted by the San Francisco Giants in the first round of the 1995 Major League Baseball Amateur Draft.
The 1995 Acadiana team featured Fontenot (1995) and Gil Meche (1996), who were both MLB first-round draft choices.
The 6-foot-2, 185-pound Fontenot played for the Giants' minor league affiliate in Bellingham, Washington in 1995, going 0-3 with a 1.93 ERA.
After spending two more seasons with the Giants organization, including minor league stops in San Jose and Shreveport, Fontenot was part of a four-player trade, in which the Giants sent three players to the Florida Marlins, including Fontenot, for relief pitcher Rob Nenn.
After splitting time between AA Portland and AA Charlotte in 1998, Fontenot was called up to the big leagues by the Marlins in late May.
Fontenot appeared in 8 games, all as a starter, going 0-7 with a 6.33 ERA. In 42.2 innings, he allowed 56 hits, an 30 earned runs, while striking out 24 hitters.
Unfortunately, Fontenot would not pitch in Major League Baseball ever again.
In 1999, Fontenot pitched in 8 games from AAA Calgary, before retiring.
In five seasons in the minor leagues, Fontenot went 25-22 with a 4.74 ERA.
Fontenot made his MLB debut on May 23 of 1998, while making his final appearance on July 2 of 1998.