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Christopher Thomas Ray (born January 12, 1982) is an American former professional baseball pitcher. He played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Baltimore Orioles, Texas Rangers, San Francisco Giants, and Seattle Mariners.

Chris Ray
091306 110 Chris Ray.jpg
Ray with the Baltimore Orioles
Born: (1982-01-12) January 12, 1982 (age 37)
Tampa, Florida
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
June 14, 2005, for the Baltimore Orioles
Last MLB appearance
July 29, 2011, for the Seattle Mariners
MLB statistics
Win–loss record18–19
Earned run average4.10

Early life and careerEdit

Ray graduated from Hillsborough High School in Tampa, Florida,[1] and was drafted in the third round of the 2003 Major League Baseball Draft out of The College of William and Mary, where he started on their baseball team.

Professional careerEdit

Minor leaguesEdit

He spent the 2003 and 2004 seasons in the Orioles minor league system before being called up in June of 2005.

Baltimore OriolesEdit


In 2005, Ray allowed only two earned runs in just under 20 innings. However, during the month of August, Ray was optioned to the Orioles' Double-A affiliate, the Bowie Baysox. His stint at Bowie was brief, as he was called up again in late August. The second stint with the Orioles saw Ray allow 4 earned runs in 16 innings. Ray finished 2005 with a 2.66 ERA in 40 innings pitched over 41 games, compiling a record of 1-3 with 8 holds. Ray also compiled a 1.28 WHIP.

The Orioles coaching staff had been so impressed by Ray's 2005 season that they were considering him their closer of the future. But, since the Orioles have had little success with rushing prospects into big league roles, they planned to ease Ray into the closer role sometime in 2007. However, closer B.J. Ryan left the Orioles as a free agent to the Toronto Blue Jays, and the Orioles were unable to sign a closer on the free agent market to serve as a short term solution, causing Ray to be the Orioles' de facto closer.


Ray became the full-time closer of Baltimore Orioles for the start of the 2006 season. Ray had a very successful first season as the closer for the O's. Ray compiled 33 saves with a 2.73 ERA and 51 strikeouts and allowed an opponent batting average of just .193. Given his success, the Orioles stuck with Ray as their closer for the 2007 regular season. However, his success would not carry over, resulting in a sub par year. During the 2007 season Ray's numbers dropped to 16 saves with a 4.43 ERA and 44 strikeouts.[2]


Ray underwent Tommy John surgery on August 17, 2007.[3] In August 2008 he made nine rehabilitation appearances in the minor leagues, but did not pitch for the Orioles during the season. In 2009, he made the opening day roster but posted an era of 7.27.

Texas RangersEdit

Ray was traded to the Texas Rangers on December 9, 2009 for Kevin Millwood. He had 35 appearances and an ERA of 3.40.

San Francisco GiantsEdit

Ray was traded to the San Francisco Giants, along with pitching prospect Michael Main, for Bengie Molina on June 30, 2010.[4]

On December 2, 2010, the Giants non-tendered Ray, making him a free agent.

Seattle MarinersEdit

Ray signed a minor league contract with the Seattle Mariners on January 25, 2011. The deal included an invite to spring training.[5] On August 1, 2011, Ray was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right shoulder latissimus dorsi.[6] He was released on August 16.[7]

Cleveland IndiansEdit

Ray attended spring training in 2012 with the Cleveland Indians as a non-roster invitee.[8] Reassigned to minor-league camp on 30 March 2012,[9] Ray began the season pitching in the Triple-A Columbus Clippers opening game on 5 April 2012.[10] Ray was released by the Indians on July 7.

Oakland AthleticsEdit

On July 13, Ray signed with the Oakland Athletics and was assigned to the Triple-A Sacramento River Cats. He was released on July 26. In the 2012-2013 offseason, he retired.[11]

Personal lifeEdit

Chris and his wife Alice have two children, Virginia and Thomas. Chris stated in a March 2013 interview he was now retired from baseball.[12]

In November 2012 Chris, his brother Phil Ray, and their families opened a craft brewery in Ashland, Virginia, Center Of The Universe (COTU) Brewing.[13][14]

Ray is an avid homebrewer and released a collaborative charity beer with Fremont Brewing Company in July 2011, benefiting Operation Homefront. Named Homefront IPA, it was sold at Safeco Field, Fremont Brewing Company and various retail stores in the Seattle area.[15][16] In 2013 Homefront IPA was collaboratively produced by nine breweries from all over the country, including Center of the Universe Brewing.[17] In 2014 eleven breweries were involved.[18]


  1. ^ "Home offers no respite for Rays".
  2. ^ "Chris Ray".
  3. ^ "Orioles' Ray likely out for '08 after elbow surgery". August 17, 2007.
  4. ^ Rhett Bollinger (2010-07-01). "Rangers make deal to acquire Giants' Molina". MLB Advanced Media. Archived from the original on 2010-07-04. Retrieved 2010-07-01.
  5. ^ Spratt, Gerry (January 25, 2011). "Mariners sign right-hander Ray with spring invite". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Hearst Corporation.
  6. ^ "Mariners place Ray on DL". 1 August 2011. Archived from the original on 14 July 2013. Retrieved 14 July 2013.
  7. ^ Nicholson-Smith, Ben. "Mariners Release Chris Ray". Retrieved 16 August 2011.
  8. ^ Bastian, Jordan (15 March 2012). "Final bullpen spots still to be hashed out". Retrieved 7 April 2012.
  9. ^ Hoynes, Paul (30 March 2012). "Jeanmar Gomez is latest Cleveland Indians pitcher to be injured". The Plain Dealer. Cleveland, Ohio. Retrieved 7 April 2012.
  10. ^ Massie, Jim (5 April 2012). "Janish home runs lift Bats past Clippers in opener". The Columbus Dispatch. Columbus, Ohio. Retrieved 7 April 2012.
  11. ^ Axisa, Mike (22 May 2013). "Former big leaguer Chris Ray now co-owns a brewery with his brother". Retrieved 23 May 2013. Ray, 31, pitched in Triple-A last summer before deciding to retire from the game over the winter.
  12. ^ Graves, Lee (March 22, 2013). "The Brew: On the business of brotherly love". richmond biz sense. Ashland, Virginia: richmondbizsense[dot]com. Retrieved March 23, 2013.
  13. ^ Glassner, Greg (March 16, 2012). "Baseball pitcher, brother to open brewery in Ashland". The Herald-Progress. Ashland, Virginia: Lakeway Publishers, Inc. Archived from the original on October 19, 2012. Retrieved April 3, 2012.
  14. ^ "10K After Party at Center of the Universe Brewing Company with". 10 April 2013. Retrieved 14 April 2013.
  15. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-08-07. Retrieved 2011-08-03.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  16. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-10-18. Retrieved 2011-09-19.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  17. ^ Somerville, Maella (27 March 2013). "Homefront IPA: A Drink That Gives Back". Retrieved 14 April 2013.
  18. ^ "Homefront IPA beer sales support military veterans". Washington, D.C.: WTOP-FM. 22 May 2014. Retrieved 28 May 2014.

External linksEdit