Roy “Doc” Miller (1883 – 1938)

Sport: Baseball
Position: Outfield, Pinch Hitter
Year of Induction: 2009

About

Doc” Miller was born in Chatham on February 4, 1883, attended public school here, and graduated from Chatham Collegiate. He received a B.A. from the University of Toronto in 1907 and an M. B. (medical degree) from the same university in 1911. While attending school, he made a name for himself in baseball as a pitcher, an outfielder, and a shortstop, playing for semi-professional teams in Western Ontario and professional minor league teams in the United States. He went on to play major league baseball in the National League, becoming very proficient as a hitter. He ended his 5-year career as a premier pinch hitter.

Career Highlights
  • 1903 – 1909 – played in the professional minor leagues with Manchester in the New England League (1903), Syracuse and Binghampton in the New York State League (1905), Calumet and Fargo in the Northern-Copper Country League (1906), Pueblo in the Western League (1908), and San Francisco and Pueblo in the Pacific Coast League (1909)
  • 1910 – began major league career with Chicago in the National League where he played only 1 game before being traded to Boston of the same league where he played in 130 games with a combined average of .286
  • 1911 – with Boston, played in 146 games and led the league in hits with 192 while batting .333 which was second, by 1 percentage point to Honus Wagner who led the league – also tied for lead in singles with 146, was second in doubles with 36, was fourth in at bats with 577, sixth in RBIs with 91, and was sixth in total bases with 255
  • 1912 – played 118 games in total with Boston (51 games) and Philadelphia (67 games) both of the National League and batted .259
  • 1913 – became primarily a pinch hitter and was considered one of the best – with Philadelphia, played in 69 games and batted .345 with 30 hits in 87 at bats – his 21 pinch hits set a major league record which stood for 19 years and is still sixteenth on the all-time list
  • 1914 – was traded to Cincinnati of the National League where he played his last major league season – played in 93 games with 192 at bats and hit .255

After retiring from baseball, he practiced medicine in New York City, becoming a specialist in skin diseases and cancer. He died in Jersey City, New Jersey on July 31, 1938 from an apparent suicide due to being depressed about his wife’s death two years previous to that. His remains were returned to Chatham and were buried in the family plot in Maple Leaf Cemetery.

On Saturday, June 30th 2009, “Doc” Miller was inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame.

Minor League Statistics
Games 352, at bats 1254, hits 380, average .303

Major League Statistics
Games 557, at bats 1717, hits 507, runs scored 184, RBIs 235. average .295 which ranks fourth best by a Canadian born player

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