By Jason Shetler
The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum has announced that five players will be honored for their fourth annual “Hall of Game” class on June 10th. Those players are Dave Stewart, Lee Smith, Maury Wills, Tony Perez and Al Oliver.
Oliver signed with the Pirates as an amateur player in 1964. He spent the first ten seasons of his Major League career in Pittsburgh. Oliver was a three-time All-Star with the Pirates in 1972, 1975 and 1976, and played an integral part in the Bucs World Series championship club in 1971.
Prior to the 1978 season, Oliver was involved in a four-team trade that sent him to the Texas Rangers and Bert Blyleven to the Pirates. While with the Rangers, he was a two-time All-Star in 1980 and 1981. Oliver was then a two-time All-Star for the Montreal Expos, capturing the NL batting title with them in 1982. He also played for the San Francisco Giants, Philadelphia Phillies, Los Angeles Dodgers and Toronto Blue Jays. During his 18-year big league career, Oliver batted .303, while posting a .795 OPS in 2,368 games.