Top 10 Blue Jays Relievers of All Time
9. Dale Murray
Photo Credit: GCRL on Blogspot
In 1970, Dale Murray was drafted by the Expos in the 18th round. He made his debut with the Expos in 1974 and by that time was already a full time reliever. Curiously, he did make one career MLB start—4 years into his career. He played for Montreal, Cincinnati, and the New York Mets before joining the Jays at age 31 in 1981. Unlike Downs, Dale Murray was an established reliever when he came to the Blue Jays. However, Murray had a down year in 1980 and the Jays were able to sign him as a minor league free agent.
Murray was called up late 1981 and threw 15 excellent innings. The next year he was heavily relied upon and put together one of the best single season performances by a Jays reliever. He pitched 111 innings with a 3.16 ERA, 2.93 FIP for a 2.6 WAR. The Jays capitalized on his value at the perfect time and dealt him to the Yankees where his career soon ended. That trade yielded a talented, young prospect named Fred McGriff.
It’s somewhat baffling to explain how Murray achieved the results he did. His WHIP was always high and his strikeouts always quite low. Without the aid of hit trajectory stats or pitch F/x from that era its difficult to say but it’s safe to assume that he often generated weak contact. Regardless, somehow he got the job done.
He appeared in the least games of anyone on this list with only 67 and pitched 126.1 innings which just passed the low end cutoff for inclusion. He did make the most of the time he was here. He posted a 2.92 ERA and a 2.82 FIP. His K/9 rate was only 5.13 but made up for it with a 2.64 BB/9 and a scant 0.21 HR/9. His gmLi was 1.56.
He ranks 13th in WAR, 2nd in WARIP, 1st in HR/9 (half that of the next lowest), 6th in ERA and 3rd in FIP among Blue Jays relievers all time.
At age 65, Murray appears to just be enjoying retirement.