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Ray Fosse
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Baseball Player
    (April 4, 1947-October 13, 2021)
    Born in Marion, Illinois
    Catcher for the Cleveland Indians (1967-72,1976-77), Oakland Athletics (1973-75), Seattle Mariners (1977) and Milwaukee Brewers (1979)
    Two-time All-Star (1970-71)
    Color commentator for Athletics' radio and TV broadcasts (1986-2021)
    He is remembered mainly for Pete Rose plowing over him during the 1970 All-Star Game: 'I hear about it every year just before the All-Star break. Some reporter will call me, and that's all they'll want to talk about, me and Pete Rose.'
    He claimed the resulting shoulder injury ruined his career, even though he won a Gold Glove and was named to the All-Star team the next season.
    Rose said, 'As far as I'm concerned, all I did was make Ray Fosse famous.'
    He suffered a much worse injury when he crushed a disc in his neck while breaking up a clubhouse fight between Reggie Jackson and Billy North (June 5, 1974), but he does not complain about Reggie ruining his career.
    He missed the entire 1978 season after tripping over a hole while running down the baseline during spring training.
    He was nicknamed 'the Marion Mule' for his physical strength and refusal to accept defeat.
    He twice led the AL in baserunners caught stealing (1970,1973).
    When Gaylord Perry won the Cy Young Award, he said, 'I've got to split it up and give part--a big part--to my catcher, Ray Fosse. He kept pushing me in games when I didn't have good stuff.'
    Pitcher Sam McDowell said, 'Ray thinks like a pitcher. I shake off his signs very seldom, maybe two or three times a game.'
    In a bit of karmic revenge, when Pete Rose was convicted of tax evasion, he served his sentence at the federal prison in Marion, Illinois -- Fosse's hometown.

Credit: C. Fishel

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