oil can

Oil Can Boyd

Dennis Ray "Oil Can" Boyd (born 6 October 1959 in Meridian, Mississippi) is a former starting pitcher in Major League Baseball. Boyd played for the Boston Red Sox (1982-89), Montreal Expos (1990-91), and Texas Rangers (1991). He batted and threw right-handed. Boyd currently lives in East Providence, Rhode Island, with his wife, daughter Tala, and son Dennis.

Boyd had one of the more colorful personalities of his generation and a quotable outlook that made him memorable long after his career ended. He attended Jackson State University. Being selected by the Boston Red Sox in the 16th round of the amateur draft, Boyd made his debut in the season. He pitched 10 years in the Majors before blood clots in his right arm ended his career.

In a 10-season career, Boyd collected a 78-77 record with 799 strikeouts and a 4.04 ERA in 1389.2 innings.

From 1983-85 Boyd won 31 games for the Sox, with a high 15 victories in . In the same season, he posted career-highs in games started (35), complete games (13), strikeouts (117) and innings pitched (272.1). In he won 16 games (a career-high), but after three disappointing years with Boston, he signed with the Expos as a free agent after the season.

In Boyd won 10 games with a career-best 2.93 ERA. When the Rangers acquired him from Montreal in the 1991 midseason, it looked like a deal which might lead to a division title, and though Boyd's work with the Expos before coming to Texas wasn't as good (6-8, 3.52), it was plenty good enough for the pitching-poor Rangers. That was the plan, but Boyd turned out to be a disaster. In 12 starts he posted a 2-7 record with a 6.68 ERA (the highest of his career) and allowed 81 hits in only 62 innings. Boyd was a free agent when the season ended, and after turning down some offers for relief duties, he retired. Between the 1990s and 2000s, Boyd has pitched in the minors, Puerto Rico and Mexico.

In November 2005, Boyd was indicted by a federal grand jury in Mississippi for threatening a former girlfriend (who was also a business associate) as well as her son. On November 14, 2005, Boyd surrendered to F.B.I. agents in Tupelo, Mississippi.


  • He [Oil Can] pitched like his hero, Satchel Paige, but with deception. --William C. Rhoden, of The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
  • I am The Can, and I am going to come right at you with my best shit, and if you can hit it, I want to see how far Bo Jackson can hit The Oil Can. --Boyd, to Jackson, before he hit Boyd's first pitch over the 71-foot high score board in straight away center field at Fenway Park (the ball landed 515 feet from home plate). Resource: 10K Truth - Baseball Quotes.
  • That’s what they get for building a park on the ocean. --Boyd, after a 1986 Red Sox-Indians game at Cleveland Municipal Stadium (on the shore of Lake Erie) was postponed due to fog. Resource: 07/13/2004 article by Jeff Sullivan of The Pawtucket (RI) Times.
  • You've got to do what's good for The Can. --Boyd, responding to criticism of his decision to try to play Major League Baseball as a replacement player during the 1994-95 strike.


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