Richard Dale Murray
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 4", Weight 195 lb.
- High School Locke High School
- Debut June 7, 1980
- Final Game July 4, 1983
- Born July 6, 1957 in Los Angeles, CA USA
He attended Locke High School in L.A. where he was All-City in his senior year in 1975. He was on the third team in 1974. In the June 1975 amateur draft, he was selected in the 6th round by the San Francisco Giants.
He played the 1976 season with the Cedar Rapids Giants. For the second straight season, he was the youngest player on the team. He finished tied for second on the team with a slugging percentage of .449. In 66 games, his line was .264/.342/.449. Murray was back with Cedar Rapids in 1977 and playing regularly at first base, he came through with a very fine season, leading the team in extra-base-hits (48) and RBIs (94). His 21 home runs were one behind team leader Bob Brenly. In 129 games, his line was .276/.327/.457 with 20 stolen bases. He was assigned to the Instructional League the following Fall and hit so well that he made the All-Star team. At that point, he was viewed so highly by the Giants that he was considered as the team's first baseman of the future, succeeding Willie McCovey.
He skipped two levels in 1978 and was assigned to the Phoenix Giants in the Pacific Coast League, where he would play the next four seasons. Murray was the team's main first baseman. His line was .281/.342/.394 in 117 games.
His production declined in 1979. In 125 games, his line was .263/.340/.363. In 1980, Murray was switched to third base. He had a good start and was called up by the Giants in early June. He was used regularly at first base and did well in his first two weeks. In fact, the 42-year-old McCovey announced his retirement shortly after his call-up, considering his successor was now on board. Murray's OPS was over .750 when he fell into a slump during which he went 0 for 26. On July 10th, he suffered a torn ligament in his right finger sliding at third base and was out until September. With Phoenix, he drove in 31 runs in 49 games with an OPS of .783. With the Giants, his final output was .214/.259/.340 in 53 games, including 51 starts. Given his injury, it was Mike Ivie who ended up with the most playing time at first base that year.
Murray was back playing first base with Phoenix in 1981. In 94 games, his line was .327/.370/.490. It was at that point his best season in pro baseball, but he was still dropped from the Giants' major league roster. In December, the Cleveland Indians picked him in the 1981 Rule V draft.
Murray never played with the Indians. He was sent to the Charleston Charlies, in the International League, in late March. In early June, after showing a line of .242/.337/.333 in 40 games, he was sold to the Montreal Expos organization. In a more friendly environment with the Wichita Aeros of the American Association, Murray regained his offensive touch. He played mostly first base and the outfield. In 80 games, his line was .288/.323/.495 driving in 54 runs (although his OPS was over .800, it still was below the team's average, due to the very hitter-friendly context in which the Aeros played their home games).
Murray was released in February of 1983, just before spring training and was picked up by the Giants just before the start of the regular season. He had his best season with Phoenix with a line of .299/.364/.494 in 120 games, hitting 19 home runs with 82 RBIs. He earned a brief mid-season call-up, playing 4 games including 2 starts. He was back with Phoenix in 1984 for a sixth and final season. In 121 games, his line was .287/.329/.403, mostly at first base and DH.
He is the brother of Hall of Famer Eddie Murray. Three more brothers, Charles Murray, Leon Murray and Venice Murray played in the minors. He kept being involved in baseball, as a minor league coach and most recently with the Dusty Baker baseball school.