Ray Shearer

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Ray Solomon Shearer

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Biographical Information[edit]

On the final day of the 1957 season, Ray Shearer helped the Milwaukee Braves to a come-from-behind victory in the bottom of the 9th inning with a pinch-hit single. The Braves, who had already clinched the pennant, trailed the Cincinnati Redlegs, 3-2, when base hits by Joe Adcock, Shearer, Red Schoendienst (his National League-leading 200th of the year), and Felix Mantilla gave them a 4-3 victory for their 95th win. The base hit was the only one of his career for the 28-year-old outfielder, who struck out and walked in his only other game - his September 18th debut - giving him a "lifetime" .500 batting average in the major leagues.

Ray was originally signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers before the 1950 season and had a big year in his first season in pro ball, hitting .317 for the Sheboygan Indians and leading the class D Wisconsin State League with 30 home runs and 137 RBIs. Ray spent the next eight seasons (1950-1957) in the minors, hitting over .300 three different times and had double-digit figures in home runs seven of those years. The Dodgers traded Shearer to the Braves in return for Jim Frey on July 4, 1956 and Ray came of age in 1957 with the Wichita Braves of the American Association, hitting .316 with 29 home runs in 138 games.

After his late-season call-up to County Stadium in 1957, his only shot at the big leagues, Ray spent the rest of his career in the minors, playing five more seasons, all in class A ball or better. He played with teams like the Nashville Vols, Atlanta Crackers, Louisville Colonels and Richmond Virginians and finished his 13-season minor league run in 1962 with the York White Roses and the Augusta Yankees. Ray was 32 years old when he left baseball and had put together a minor league stat sheet that shows him hitting at a .288 average with 204 home runs while appearing in 1,614 games.

After baseball, Shearer was employed with a trucking company as a tractor-trailer driver when he died February 22, 1982, at the age of 52 in York, PA.


Baseball Players of the 1950s

Further Reading[edit]

  • William H, Johnson: "Ray Shearer", in Gregory H. Wolf, ed.: Thar's Joy in Braveland: The 1957 Milwaukee Braves, SABR, Phoenix, AZ, 2014, pp. 185-187. ISBN 978-1933599717

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