Ray Oyler

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Raymond Francis Oyler

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Biographical Information[edit]

Ray Oyler was a notoriously light-hitting shortstop who played 542 games in the American League over a period of six years. Selected from the Detroit Tigers, he was the third player chosen by the Seattle Pilots in the 1969 expansion draft.

His .175 career batting average is the lowest of any player with at least 1,000 plate appearances since the Deadball era. In the 1968 World Series, Tiger manager Mayo Smith famously decided to bench him in favor of outfielder Mickey Stanley - who had almost no professional experience playing the infield - in order to get another bat in the line-up. But he did play in four of the seven games as a defensive substitute. His batting average was minute .135 in 111 games that season.

In Ball Four, Jim Bouton wrote that Oyler's nickname was 'Oil Can Harry' "because he always looks as though he had just changed a set of rings."

Oyler died from a heart attack at the age of 42.

He was profiled by Al Pepper in the book Mendoza's Heroes in 2002.

Notable Achievements[edit]

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