Dexter Fowler
Fowler with the St. Louis Cardinals in 2017
Center fielder
Born: (1986-03-22) March 22, 1986 (age 37)
Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.
Batted: Switch
Threw: Right
MLB debut
September 2, 2008, for the Colorado Rockies
Last MLB appearance
April 9, 2021, for the Los Angeles Angels
MLB statistics
Batting average.259
Home runs127
Runs batted in517
Career highlights and awards
Men's baseball
Representing  United States
Olympic Games
Bronze medal – third place 2008 Beijing Team

William Dexter Fowler (born March 22, 1986) is an American former professional baseball center fielder. He played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Colorado Rockies, Houston Astros, Chicago Cubs, St. Louis Cardinals, and Los Angeles Angels. He participated in the 2008 Summer Olympics as a member of the United States national baseball team and won the World Series with the Cubs in 2016.

Early life

William Dexter Fowler was born in Atlanta, Georgia, and attended Milton High School in Milton, Georgia. At Milton, Fowler hit .457 with 14 home runs in 105 at-bats.[citation needed] Fowler rejected offers from Harvard and the University of Miami in order to play Major League Baseball, after having originally committed to Miami.[1] Before signing with the Rockies, Fowler was exclusively a right-handed hitter.[2]

International career

As a minor leaguer during the 2008 season, Fowler was selected to represent the United States in the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China.[3] He and the U.S. team ended up winning the bronze medal in the Olympics by defeating Japan, 8–4, in the bronze medal game.[4]

Professional career

Draft and minor leagues

Fowler was drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the 14th round of the 2004 Major League Baseball draft. In 2008, he was selected by Major League Baseball to play in the All-Star Futures Game at Yankee Stadium.

Fowler with the Colorado Rockies

Fowler was batting .337 with nine home runs, 61 runs batted in (RBIs) and 20 stolen bases for the Rockies' Double-A Texas League affiliate, the Tulsa Drillers, prior to playing for Team USA in the 2008 Olympics.

Colorado Rockies (2008–2013)

Fowler was called up to the Major Leagues for the first time on September 2, 2008. He made his debut that same day in a 6–5 extra-inning home win over the San Francisco Giants, coming in as a pinch runner in the bottom of the 10th inning; he was subsequently picked off at first base.[5] In Fowler's first at-bat in the bottom of the third inning of a 9–2 home loss against the Giants the following day, he flied out to right field.[6]

On September 10, 2008, Fowler recorded his first hit, an infield single, off of Will Ohman in the top of the seventh inning of a 9–5 road loss against the Atlanta Braves.[7]

On April 8, 2009, Fowler hit his first career home run off Doug Davis of the Arizona Diamondbacks, as part of a 9–2 road win. He hit the home run on the first pitch of the game, becoming the first player in Rockies history to do so.[8]

On April 27, 2009, Fowler tied a modern-day rookie record when he stole five bases against the San Diego Padres in a 12–7 victory.[9]

In 2010, Fowler led the Majors in triples, accumulating 14 on the season. In 439 at-bats on the year, he had six home runs, 36 RBIs, 73 runs scored, and 114 total base hits.

In 2011, Fowler was third in the National League in triples, hitting 15 that season. In 481 at-bats on the year, he hit five home runs, 45 RBIs, 84 runs scored, and 128 total base hits.

The 2012 season saw Fowler's batting stats increase to career-highs. He hit 13 home runs, 53 RBIs, and a batting average of .300 in 454 at-bats.

However, much of his success came while hitting at home, Coors Field. His home OPS was .880, but only .694 on the road.[citation needed]

Houston Astros (2014)

Fowler with the Houston Astros

On December 3, 2013, Fowler was traded, along with a player to be named later to the Houston Astros for outfielder Brandon Barnes and pitcher Jordan Lyles.[10] The Rockies eventually sent cash to the Astros to complete the deal instead of the player to be named later.[11] He hit .276 in 116 games for the Astros during the 2014 season.[12]

Chicago Cubs (2015–2016)

Fowler in 2016

On January 19, 2015, Fowler was traded to the Chicago Cubs for Luis Valbuena and Dan Straily.[13] He ended the 2015 season with a .250 average, 102 runs scored, 46 RBIs, 17 home runs, and 20 stolen bases.[14] In the 2015 National League wild card game, Fowler helped the Cubs to a 4–0 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates with three hits, three runs scored, one RBI, one home run, and a stolen base.[15]

With the Cubs finishing the 2015 season with a 97–65 record, the team entered the postseason for the first time in seven years. In nine postseason games, Fowler batted .396 with two home runs and three RBIs. In Game 4 of the 2015 NLCS against the New York Mets, he was the final batter to strike out looking as the Cubs were eliminated from the postseason.

Fowler at the 2016 Home Run Derby

Fowler signed a one-year contract with the Cubs that included a mutual option for the 2017 season on February 25, 2016,[16] despite reportedly agreeing to a three-year contract with the Baltimore Orioles earlier that week.[17] The Orioles claimed that Fowler's insistence on an opt-out clause after one year was the holdup on the deal and that they were blindsided when he signed with the Cubs. Fowler on the other hand insisted he never had agreed to a deal with the Orioles and he and his agent blamed the team and the media for leaking incorrect information.[18]

Fowler earned his first career MLB ejection for arguing a strike three call by umpire Vic Carapazza on May 5, 2016.[19] Fowler was selected to his first All-Star Game in 2016 representing the Cubs along with six other teammates.

Fowler finished the year batting with a .276 average hitting 13 home runs and 48 RBIs and 84 runs scored. He swung at only 19.4% of pitches outside the strike zone (the lowest percentage in the majors).[20]

On October 25, 2016, Dexter Fowler along with teammates Jason Heyward, Addison Russell, and Carl Edwards Jr. became the first African-Americans to play for the Cubs in a World Series game. Additionally, Fowler was the first African-American to appear and to bat for the Cubs in a World Series. Fowler is the first African-American to start for the Cubs in a World Series.[21][22][23][a]

Fowler led off Game 7 of the World Series with a home run, becoming the first player in history to lead off a World Series Game 7 with a home run.[24] The Cubs won the game 8–7 in 10 innings, giving the team their first championship in 108 years.[25] On November 5, Fowler declined his mutual option for the 2017 season and became a free agent.[26]

St. Louis Cardinals (2017–2020)

Dexter Fowler with the St. Louis Cardinals

On December 9, 2016, Fowler and the St. Louis Cardinals agreed to a five-year, $82.5 million deal.[27] He hit his first home run and RBI as a Cardinal against Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Gerrit Cole on April 19, 2017. Fowler finished his first season in St. Louis with a .264 batting average, 18 home runs, and 64 RBIs in 118 games.[28]

Prior to the 2018 season, he agreed to shift positions to become the Cardinals' starting right fielder; the Cardinals moved Tommy Pham to center and had acquired Marcell Ozuna in the offseason.[29] Fowler hit his first ever walk-off home run on May 6, 2018, in the bottom of the 14th inning against his former team, the Chicago Cubs. His two-run home run helped lead the Cardinals to a 4–3 victory.[30] On August 21, 2018, Fowler was placed on the 60-day disabled list,[31] ending a disappointing 2018 season in which he slashed .180/.278/.298 with eight home runs and 31 RBIs in 90 games.[32]

Fowler returned healthy in 2019 as St. Louis' starting right fielder. Over 150 games during the regular season, he slashed .238/.346/.409 with 19 home runs and 67 RBIs.

In 2020 he batted .233/.317/.389 with 28 strikeouts in 90 at bats.[33]

Los Angeles Angels (2021)

On February 4, 2021, the Cardinals traded Fowler and cash to the Los Angeles Angels for a player to be named later.[34]

In an April 9 game against the Toronto Blue Jays, Fowler was carted off of the field after suffering an apparent knee injury after awkwardly sliding into second base. It was later revealed that Fowler had suffered a torn left ACL and would undergo season-ending surgery.[35] On April 13, Fowler was placed on the 60-day injured list.[36]

Toronto Blue Jays

On March 31, 2022, Fowler signed a minor league contract with the Toronto Blue Jays.[37] Fowler appeared in 3 games for the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons, going 5-for-12 with 3 RBI. On May 3, Fowler requested and was granted his release by the Blue Jays.[38]

On January 31, 2023, Fowler announced his retirement from professional baseball.[39]

Personal life

Fowler is married to Aliya Fowler and together they have two daughters. They live in Las Vegas during the offseason.[40] Fowler is a Christian.[41] Fowler is good friends with former teammate Chris Nelson, who is also from Georgia.[2]

See also


  1. ^ Jackie Robinson's rookie season was 1947, which was two years after the Chicago Cubs' appearance in the 1945 World Series. In 1953, Ernie Banks, known as Mr. Cub, became the first African-American on the Cubs roster.


  1. ^ Baseball America Prospect Handbook. Simon and Schuster. 2007. p. 147. ISBN 9781932391145. Retrieved February 19, 2014 – via Internet Archive.
  2. ^ a b "Fowler the product of many mentors |". Archived from the original on March 3, 2016.
  3. ^ "2008 Minor League Olympians". Retrieved February 19, 2014.
  4. ^ "Bronzed in history: U.S. gets medal". Archived from the original on August 24, 2008.
  5. ^ Renck, Troy E. (September 2, 2008). "Rockies' Fowler picked on in debut". Retrieved February 19, 2014.
  6. ^ "Zito keeps up hot streak to slow Rockies' improved play". September 3, 2008. Retrieved February 19, 2014.
  7. ^ "Atlanta scores five in 7th to rally, dent Rockies' playoff hopes". September 10, 2008. Retrieved February 19, 2014.
  8. ^ "First things first: Fowler goes deep". May 24, 2013. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved February 19, 2014.
  9. ^ "Fowler ties modern-day record with 5 SBs; Hawpe taken to hospital". April 27, 2009. Retrieved February 19, 2014.
  10. ^ "Astros add Fowler, send Barnes, Lyles to Rockies". December 3, 2013. Retrieved February 19, 2014.
  11. ^ Drellich, Evan (June 3, 2014). "Astros, Rockies complete Dexter Fowler trade with cash exchange". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved January 19, 2015.
  12. ^ "2014 Houston Astros Batting, Pitching, & Fielding Statistics". Baseball Reference.
  13. ^ Baer, Bill (January 19, 2015). "Cubs acquire Dexter Fowler in a trade with the Astros". NBC Sports.
  14. ^ "Dexter Fowler, RF, St. Louis Cardinals".
  15. ^ "Cubs vs. Pirates - Box Score - October 7, 2015 - ESPN".
  16. ^ "Cubs, Fowler agree on 1-year deal". February 25, 2016. Retrieved February 25, 2016.
  17. ^ Schmuck, Peter (February 23, 2016). "With Dexter Fowler on top, Orioles offensive lineup no longer has any holes in it". The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved February 25, 2016.
  18. ^ Encina, Eduardo A. (February 25, 2016). "Orioles' Dan Duquette: Opt-out clause was deal breaker with Dexter Fowler". Baltimore Sun. Retrieved February 25, 2016.
  19. ^ Imber, Gil (May 5, 2016). "MLB Ejection 022 - Vic Carapazza (1; Dexter Fowler)". Close Call Sports & Umpire Ejection Fantasy League.
  20. ^ "Major League Leaderboards » 2016 » Batters » Plate Discipline Statistics | FanGraphs Baseball".
  21. ^ Collier, Jamal (October 25, 2016). "Fowler Cubs' first African-American in Series: Center fielder will be first up in Game 1; Heyward, Edwards also honored by distinction". Retrieved October 25, 2016.
  22. ^ Muskat, Carrie (October 25, 2016). "Cubs set roster for World Series vs. Indians: Schwarber returns after missing nearly all of season with knee injuries". Retrieved October 26, 2016.
  23. ^ "Box Score: Game 1, 2016 World Series". Gameday. October 25, 2016. Retrieved October 26, 2016.
  24. ^ McCalvy, Adam. "Fowler makes history with leadoff HR". Cleveland: MLB Advanced Media. Retrieved November 2, 2016.
  25. ^ Bastian, Jordan; Muskat, Carrie. "Chicago Cubs win 2016 World Series". MLB. Retrieved November 3, 2016.
  26. ^ Adams, Steve (November 5, 2016). "Dexter Fowler Declines Mutual Option". Retrieved November 6, 2016.
  27. ^ "Fowler, Cardinals agree on 5-year deal". December 9, 2016.
  28. ^ "2018 Player Profile: Dexter Fowler - FantraxHQ-January 27, 2018". January 27, 2018.
  29. ^ Goold, Derrick (February 17, 2018). "Fowler says Cardinals made right move for them, for his career". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved February 17, 2018.
  30. ^ Gonzales, Mark (May 7, 2018). "Dexter Fowler's 2-run HR in 14th beats Cubs 4-3, hands them fifth straight loss". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved May 7, 2018.
  31. ^ "Cardinals' Dexter Fowler: Moves to 60-day disabled list".
  32. ^ "Dexter Fowler moved from the 10-day DL to the 60-day DL". August 21, 2018.
  33. ^ "Dexter Fowler Stats".
  34. ^ "Los Angeles Angels get Dexter Fowler in trade with St. Louis Cardinals". February 5, 2021.
  35. ^ "Dexter Fowler to Undergo Season-Ending Knee Surgery".
  36. ^ "Angels Make Handful of Roster Moves".
  37. ^ "Veteran outfielder Dexter Fowler officially signs with Toronto Blue Jays". March 31, 2022. Retrieved April 1, 2022.
  38. ^ "OF Fowler requests release from Blue Jays -". May 3, 2022.
  39. ^ "Cubs' World Series champ Dexter Fowler retires". Retrieved January 31, 2023.
  40. ^ "Fowler says Cardinals made right move for them, for his career".
  41. ^ "404". ((cite web)): Cite uses generic title (help)