Charles Ray Knight (born December 28 1952, in Albany, Georgia) is a former right-handed Major League Baseball player who played in the 1970s and 1980s. He was primarily a Third baseman, although he did see some action at first base, second base, designated hitter, shortstop and in the outfield. He played for the Cincinnati Reds (1974–1981), Houston Astros (1982–1984), New York Mets (1984–1986), Baltimore Orioles (1987), and the Detroit Tigers (1988). He is now a studio analyst for MASN's coverage of the Washington Nationals.
Knight made his major league debut with Cincinnati in 1974, but didn't become a regular there until replacing the exiting Pete Rose at third base in 1979 (Rose had signed with the Philadelphia Phillies). Knight was not on the major league roster for the Reds two championship teams in 1975, and 1976. Knight was an All Star in 1980 with Cincinnati, and made the team once again in 1982 while a member of the Astros. In 1984 Knight was traded mid-season to the Mets, where he would wind up on the World Champion Mets team of 1986.
While Knight is notable as being a very high quality hitter, making the Top 10 leaderboard in batting three times, he is mostly known for his role in the 1986 World Series, when he not only scored the winning run in Game 6 on Mookie Wilson's famous grounder through Bill Buckner's legs, but he also hit the tiebreaking home run in Game 7. Due to his contributions Knight won the World Series MVP award, and then became the first player to join a new team the season after winning the award, signing with the Orioles in 1987. The Mets granted Knight free agency after it was decided that Howard Johnson would be the Mets' everyday third baseman. His all-time statistics in the postseason include a .279 BA, with 1 home run and 7 RBIs.
In 1986, Knight also won the Babe Ruth Award for the National League and The Sporting News Comeback Player of the Year Award. He was also a winner of the Hutch Award in 1983.
In a 13-season career, Knight put together a .271 batting average with 84 home runs and 595 RBIs in 1495 games. He had 490 runs and 14 career stolen bases. He accumulated 266 doubles and 1311 hits in total, in 4829 at bats.
In Knight's managerial career, he is 125-137, managing the Reds from 1996-97 and in 2003 for one game. In 1997, he forgot how many outs there had been in a half-inning in which the Reds were at bat and called for a bunt at an inopportune time. He later fined himself $250 for the incident. The team's lack of success would lead to his eventual firing and his replacement with Jack McKeon.
Knight was one of several members of the 1986 championship team not to attend the 20th anniversary celebration at Shea Stadium on August 19, 2006; the others include manager Davey Johnson, (who was managing Team USA in Cuba), Dwight Gooden (who was serving a jail sentence), Roger McDowell (who is the Atlanta Braves pitching coach), Lee Mazzilli (who was the New York Yankees bench coach), and pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre (whose reasons for not attending are unknown). While the official reason given for Knight's absence was a previous commitment, many have speculated that it was more likely because of his treatment by the organization immediately following his heroics in the 1986 World Series.
Ray Knight is currently married to Nancy Lopez-Knight who is an LPGA tour champ. They have three kids together Ashley Knight who is the oldest, Erinn Knight who is the middle, and Torri Knight who is the youngest. They live together in Albany, Georgia. He also has a son from a previous marriage, Brooks Knight.
On October 23, 2017 Knight was arrested after an altercation at his house with an unidentified 33 year old man. Both were taken to the hospital and Knight was charged with assault and battery.
- (May 13, 1980) After an 0-for-15 slump with the Reds, Knight homered twice in one inning (5th) in a 15-4 win over the Mets, and is still have not the only Red to homer twice in one inning.
- Johnny Holliday, Knight's fellow MASN broadcaster, has playfully referred to him as "Silverfox."
- Is a member of the Golden Gloves boxing association.
- Career statistics and player information from Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or The Baseball Cube
|World Series MVP|
|Babe Ruth Award|
|NL Comeback Player of the Year|
|Cincinnati Reds Manager|