Roy Daryl Moretti
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 0", Weight 165 lb.
Roy Moretti pitched seven seasons in pro ball, all at the A level. He twice led his league in saves and once in wins and strikeouts.
Moretti began his career with his hometown Victoria Mussels in 1978, going 6-5 with two saves and a 5.16 ERA. A year later, he was 6-5 with 10 saves and a 2.20 ERA for Victoria, despite 52 walks in 82 IP. He tied for 7th in the Northwest League in wins, led in saves (3 more than Mark Runyan, the runner-up) and was 3rd in ERA (after Joe Georger and Brad Lenaburg).
Signed by the Oakland Athletics, he went 4-9 with 3 saves and a 3.28 ERA for the 1980 Modesto A's with 76 K in 74 IP but 54 walks. His 40 games pitched were third in the A's chain behind Ronnie Mantsch and Mark Souza. He was traded with Bob Lacey to the San Diego Padres for Tony Phillips, Kevin Bell and Eric Mustad. Assigned to the Reno Silver Sox, he was 5-1 with four saves and a 3.54 ERA in 33 contests.
Let go by San Diego, he signed with the independent Utica Blue Sox, going 9-3 with 7 saves, a 2.99 ERA and 115 strikeouts in 69 1/3 innings. Five years older than the average New York-Penn League player, he led the league in wins (one over Ted Carson and Johnny Moses), was 8th in saves, ranked 7th in ERA, led in games pitched (42, 13 more than anyone else) and was second in strikeouts (22 shy of Jim Deshaies). He and Mike Trujillo were named the loop's All-Star right-handed hurlers.
Moretti was back with Utica in 1983 and even more dominant (7-2, 10 Sv, 2.18, 116 K in 82 2/3 IP, only 58 H). He tied for 6th in the league in wins, led in games pitched (41, 12 more than anyone else), led in saves (one over Steve Frey), led in strikeouts (13 ahead of Doug Drabek) and was second to Mike Friederich in ERA. He was left off the All-Star team this time as Jeff Innis and John Boyles were picked as the righty pitchers. Team owner and president Roger Kahn described Moretti as "[O]ur Cy Young, our Christy Mathewson." Moretti accomplished all this despite taking a family leave. In early August, he left the team to fly back to British Columbia as his marriage was in trouble with all his long absence from the home. He returned to the team later that month. As the season wound down and the team played a string of make-up doubleheaders, Moretti got a rare start and fanned 12 to beat the Watertown Pirates with a complete game. Two days later, he worked out two innings to close out a game that had been halted due to rain. And a day after that, he went the distance to beat Watertown again, taking a two-hitter into the 9th before Ron DeLucchi homered to blow the shutout but Utica clinched the division title on the final day of the regular season. After one more day rest, the team turned to Moretti down 1-0 in the best-of-3 finals to relieve Mike Zamba against the Newark Orioles. Without his fastball, he went 5 2/3 IP, fanning eight and not allowing a hit as Utica stayed alive. They won the last game to take the title. The workhorse performance will likely not be duplicated in a low-A game again as Utica was an independent team and affiliated teams have to rest pitchers more, with long-term considerations more important than the immediate gain, which is all the indies had to look out for.
His 1983 brilliance earned him one more look from a MLB team. The Baltimore Orioles signed him and he spent 1984 with the Hagerstown Suns. He was 4-3 with four saves and a 4.21 ERA to end his pro career. He had gone 41-28 with 40 saves and a 3.28 ERA in 236 minor league games. He completed five of ten starts. In 482 1/3 IP, he struck out 531 and walked 266 while allowing 432 hits.
He later worked for the City of Victoria and coached Vancouver Island youth baseball. He died of cancer.