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Hal Keller

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Harold Kefauver Keller

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[edit] Biographical Information

Catcher Hal Keller played parts of three seasons in the majors with the Washington Senators. He later spent two years as General Manager of the Seattle Mariners.

The younger brother of New York Yankees All-Star Charlie Keller, Keller played baseball at the University of Maryland before spending time in the Army. Following his military service, he was signed by the Senators. He earned a September call-up with the club in 1949, and singled and scored a run in his first big league plate appearance on September 13th. Overall that September, he went 1-for-3 in 3 games, all as a pinch hitter.

After spending most of 1950 with the Augusta Tigers, Keller was back in the bigs that September. He started 7 games behind the plate for Washington and hit his only major league home run on September 29th, a game-tying two-run shot off James Atkins of the Boston Red Sox. Overall, he hit .214 in 11 games for the Senators that fall. He spent all of 1951 and the beginning of 1952 with the Chattanooga Lookouts before his last stint the the majors in July of that year. Backing up catcher Mickey Grasso while regular backup Clyde Kluttz was injured, he hit .174 in 11 games. Out of options, his contract was then sold to the minor league Toronto Maple Leafs. Slowed by back problems, he continued to play minor league ball through 1955.

After his playing career, Keller was a high school baseball coach in Frederick, Maryland for a time and managed the Superior Senators of the Nebraska State League in 1958. He was then assistant farm director for the Senators for two years. When the team moved and became the Minnesota Twins, he stayed in Washington and joined the expansion Senators as their farm director, a position he held even after they became the Texas Rangers in 1972. While with the team, he oversaw the selection of big leaguers Mike Cubbage, Dave Righetti, Roy Smalley, Bill Madlock, and Len Barker in the draft.

In 1979, Keller moved on to the Mariners as the club's director of player development. Under his leadership, Seattle drafted future major leaguers Spike Owen, Harold Reynolds, Phil Bradley, Mark Langston, Bud Black, Darnell Coles, and Alvin Davis. Following the 1983 season, he replaced Dan O'Brien as the team's General Manager. He retired from the post in 1985 but later returned to baseball for a time as a scout for the Detroit Tigers and California Angels.

Keller died in 2012 at age 84 after suffering from esophageal cancer and diabetes.

In addition to his big league brother, Keller's brother Hugh was a college star who played with Walter Johnson's son Eddie, and his nephew Charlie Keller Jr. played in the minors.


Preceded by
Dan O'Brien, Sr
Seattle Mariners General Manager
1984-1985
Succeeded by
Dick Balderson

[edit] Record as a General Manager

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