Red Murff

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John Robert Murff

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Biographical Information[edit]

Red Murff was a legendary minor league pitcher when he made the Milwaukee Braves roster in 1956 at the age of thirty-five. The previous season, pitching in the Texas League, he completed 28 games.

After managing the 1960 Jacksonville (FL) Braves, he went on to a distinguished career as a scout for the Houston Colt .45s (1962), New York Mets (1963-1968), Montreal Expos (1969-1986), and Atlanta Braves (1987-1991). He gave Phil Niekro the confidence to use his knuckleball in game situations. He discovered Nolan Ryan's natural ability while Ryan was still a junior in high school and signed Ryan for the Mets.

Ryan mentioned his friendship with Murff in his 1999 Hall of Fame induction speech, saying, "Red Murff, the scout that signed me for the Mets, is here with us today, and I am proud to say that Red is a friend and that Red took more of an interest in me at an early age. He thought when he saw me at 6'2" and 140, he wasn't discouraged by my build and by the way I threw the baseball as many other scouts were. And I appreciate the fact that Red spent so much time with me and worked to help me become a better pitcher. Thank you, Red."

On June 8, 1951, while pitching for the Texas City Texans, Murff pitched a no-hitter against the Harlingen Capitals. On July 15, 1952, Murff pitched 19 2/3 innings of a 20-inning game. Unfortunately, he was the losing pitcher when the Tyler East Texans lost to the Texarkana Bears, 3-2.

Red Murff Night was held on August 2, 2001 at Mike Carter Field in Tyler, TX when the Tyler Roughnecks retired Murff's number (#21).

The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor plays home games at Red Murff Field.

Notable Achievements[edit]

Related Sites[edit]

  • Michael J. Bielawa: "Red Murff", in Gregory H. Wolf, ed.: Thar's Joy in Braveland: The 1957 Milwaukee Braves, SABR, Phoenix, AZ, 2014, pp. 135-137. ISBN 978-1933599717

Related Sites[edit]