“When the thought of getting Ray on board came to mind, I thought he was overqualified to be available to teach and mentor on our staff,” Tadlock said. “His pedigree along with the combination of teaching and evaluating and all of the experience he brings to the table is something that all of us will benefit and grow from.”
Hayward, 51, returns to the collegiate level after spending the past eight years at the professional ranks as the Midwest scouting supervisor for the Miami Marlins. He also spent five years as the pitching coach/recruiting coordinator at Oklahoma (2000-04) after serving six years as a scout in the Detroit Tigers organization (1994-99). Hayward also pitched in the big leagues for three seasons with the San Diego Padres and Texas Rangers.
“I’m very excited, not only about coming to a wonderful place, but also to work with someone like Coach Tadlock and his entire coaching staff,” Hayward said. “I’m looking forward to getting after it and improving this entire program and getting it to where it should be. I know the people out there are wonderful. I’ve heard a lot of good things about everything at Texas Tech. My family and I are also looking forward to joining the Lubbock community. I’m ready to go.”
Hayward supervised scouting in a 19-state area that includes, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Arkansas, Iowa, Nebraska, Alabama, Michigan, Indiana, Mississippi, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota, North Dakota and the west portion of Kentucky and Tennessee.
During his time as the Midwest scouting supervisor, the Marlins selected 32 players in the top-10 rounds of the Major League Baseball Draft from Hayward’s area, including 21 pitchers and 11 position players.
In addition, Hayward’s scouting area produced four Marlins first-round picks while the organization selected seven players from within Hayward’s area in the top-10 rounds during the 2012 MLB Draft.
Currently, among the Marlins’ top-20 MLB prospects, four prospects – including two of the top six – came from the Midwest region that Hayward oversaw while three of the four prospects are pitchers. Hayward spent five seasons in the Big 12 Conference as the pitching coach at his alma mater, Oklahoma, from 2000-2004. Prior to beginning his coaching career, Hayward pitched three seasons in the big leagues with the San Diego Padres (1986-87) and the Texas Rangers (1988). He finished his playing career in the Rangers organization in 1991 before spending six years as an area scout with the Detroit Tigers (1994-99).
He returned to Norman as the Sooners pitching coach and recruiting coordinator in 2000, where he helped guide Oklahoma to three NCAA Tournament appearances in five seasons.
Hayward’s arrival brought an immediate impact to the Sooners pitching staff as his pitchers set a school record with 21 saves in 2000 – a mark that remains today as the program’s most saves in a season. In fact, during his first season as pitching coach, Hayward helped drop Oklahoma’s team earned run average from 6.25 in 1999 to 4.74 in 2000.
He also mentored two Oklahoma pitchers in 2000 that earned All-America recognition – an impressive accomplishment when considering just one OU pitcher had received All-America status during the previous 15 years to Hayward’s arrival as pitching coach.
In fact, Hayward’s first All-American pitcher at Oklahoma, Jeff Bajenaru, tallied an Oklahoma and Big 12 all-time record 20 saves during the 2000 season. Bajenaru went on to earn All-America accolades from six national publications – including first team recognition from the ABCA and NCBWA.
Overall, five of Hayward’s pitchers at Oklahoma continue to hold school records while three of his hurlers collected six All-America/Freshman All-America awards. In addition, Hayward mentored 10 pitchers at Oklahoma that received All-Big 12 honors.
Hayward developed 13 pitchers at Oklahoma into Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft selections, including five that were taken in the top-10 rounds.
His final season at Oklahoma in 2004, Hayward had six pitchers selected in the top-30 rounds, including left-handed pitcher David Purcey who went 16th overall in the first round to the Toronto Blue Jays. It marked just the second time in school history (1985) that six pitchers had been selected in the top-30 rounds of the MLB Draft.
Hayward first made his name known on the Oklahoma campus while being arguably the greatest all-around baseball player in Oklahoma history. He completed his four-year career at OU as the 10th overall pick of the 1983 MLB Draft by the San Diego Padres – becoming the second highest drafted left-handed pitcher in school history (1976 – LHP Bob Shirley, 8th overall – San Diego Padres).
He not only won 26 career games on the mound (ranks 4th all-time at OU), but he also recorded a .381 career batting average (ranked tied for 6th all-time at OU) while twice leading the team in batting as both a freshman and senior. Overall, Hayward remains in eight Oklahoma all-time record books while his 293 career strikeouts rank fourth and his 30 career complete games are a school record. In addition, Hayward’s 30 career home runs remain in the OU record books tied for 10th all-time.
Hayward was a two-time All-American, earning third team honors as a pitcher/first baseman in 1981 and receiving first team recognition in 1983 as a pitcher. In fact, Hayward was named All-Big Eight as a pitcher and position player in both 1981 and 1983. It marked the first time in league history that a player was named all-conference at two positions in the same year.
Hayward’s first time hearing his name called in the MLB Draft came in 1982 – following his junior season at Oklahoma – when the Pittsburgh Pirates selected him in the 12th round with the 295th overall pick.
He completed his prep career at Enid (Okla.) High School where he was a standout Oklahoma All-State selection.
Hayward and his wife, the former Jeannie Benoit of Las Vegas, Nev., have three children: Jaynie, David and Braden. Hayward was born in Enid, Okla., on April 27, 1961.
WHAT THOSE IN THE BASEBALL COMMUNITY ARE SAYING ABOUT Ray Hayward:
Stan Meek – Miami Marlins Vice President of Scouting & Former Oklahoma Pitching Coach
“This is a great hire for Texas Tech. I don’t think you could go and find a better man for that job. He obviously had a lot of success as a player. He has done the job before in college at Oklahoma. This is a great, great hire for Texas Tech. They are getting a top of the line human being, number one. Secondly, Texas Tech is getting one of the top pitching guys in the country at any level. It is really a great combination for the program. It is just a fantastic hire. It is a big loss for us, on our side, but we are happy for Ray and I think everyone will be very pleased with what he will bring to the table for not only the pitchers but for the people in that community. He is a wonderful man.”
Larry Hays – Former Texas Tech Head Baseball Coach
“I think Texas Tech hit a home run with the hiring of Ray Hayward. Ray is one of the most respected pitching coaches in the Big 12 when he was (in the Big 12) before. His contacts in the game of baseball, he has them at every level. Plus, he is just a really good person. When you tie it all together, I think Tim is really taking a step in the right direction with his staff with Ray and J-Bob.”
David Purcey – Former Oklahoma LHP (1st Round, 16th Overall Pick in 2004) & Major League Pitcher
“He really meant a lot to me at Oklahoma. He found a way to relate to you as a player. He didn’t try and mold you, he would watch you throw and figure out what will make you better. He is very patient. He isn’t a coach that is going to jump you about making a mistake. He is willing to experiment and try things. When I was coming out of high school I only threw a fastball and slider. By the time I left Oklahoma I had a fastball, a curveball and helped me develop that pitch along with my slider and changeup. Ray watched me for a while and then made some minor changes that would end up helping me in the long term. He really takes time to learn you as a pitcher. He knows your limits as a pitcher. He was very protective of me and my career – just as much as he wanted to help the team win. Knowing that he is there to help you and not abuse you makes it a lot easier to go out and be relaxed and play. He helps develop pitchers and protects them and helps his players become major league pitchers. With his professional background, he has the pedigree. He was a major league pitcher. He has scouted. He knows what to look for. He knows what it takes to pitch at the major league level. So having him at Tech will be big for that program for him to get pitchers in there and help transition them beyond the college level as well.”
Steve Smith – Baylor Head Baseball Coach
“Ray is a first-class guy. He knows what he is doing. Obviously he has been around the game his whole life. He is just a great man. It is great for college baseball and it is great for Texas Tech. He is a great guy to have back in our game of college baseball. Texas Tech got a really good man with the hiring of Ray. All you can do as a head coach is try and do the very best for your players and put them around the most quality people you can, and with Ray Hayward, Tim (Tadlock) has done a great job of that.”
Mark Lummus – Seattle Mariners Professional Scout
“I think Ray is one of the best teachers of pitching that I have ever been around. He was a wonderful player. He was a wonderful scout. He has been around some unbelievable pitching minds in his life and he is going to make an immediate impact with Texas Tech. He is a great teacher of mechanics. He has a great feel for the game. This is another great hire for the Texas Tech baseball program, they couldn’t have hired a better guy. Tech has Tim, who has a great feel for what he does. J-Bob is a super young recruiter who really, really gets after it and doesn’t leave a stone unturned and now with Ray, who is a really experienced guy, he is a real calm influence and is a super human being. He is just a great teacher of pitching and there are just a few out there who can do it. Ray is one of those guys and is one of the best. It is a really well-rounded dynamic staff, a great group of guys.”
Jim Walton – Major League Baseball Scouting Bureau
“What a great addition to Texas Tech University. That is a great addition whether it is college or professional, Ray is an exceptional person. He is just a great individual. I’ve known him since he was a kid. He cares about people. He cares about the players he is going to work with, regardless of the level. He is a wonderful person and he will do an outstanding job, I have no doubts. Ray is a solid fundamental guy – from the standpoint of pitching – he understands the game. He understands what pitchers do. He was an outstanding pitcher himself at Oklahoma. His knowledge and experience has gone from being a young player at the amateur ranks in high school to the big leagues. He is a student of the game. He understands what needs to be done from teaching and making young men understand their responsibilities and the focus they need to be a quality pitcher at any level.”
Gerald Turner – Atlanta Braves Professional Scout
“As good of a coach as Ray is he is even a better human being. He is a salt of the earth type of guy. He is very knowledgeable. He has been in the game a long time. It is unbelievable to me that he is leaving the state of Oklahoma, he is Mr. Oklahoma baseball. That is a steal for Texas Tech. He loves to be on the field that is his first love. I know he wanted to get back into coaching, that is a great hire by Tim (Tadlock). Tech is going to have three excellent recruiters. J-Bob’s success speaks for itself. Tim’s success speaks for itself. Ray was a good recruiter, that will give Texas Tech a foot-hole in Oklahoma for some players in Oklahoma for sure. Tech has spread its base out quite a bit.”
Enos Semore – Former Oklahoma Head Baseball Coach (1968-1989)
“I never coached a better player and I never coached a better person in 34 years of coaching. And I coached at every level. I don’t know where you could go get anyone any better. Ray has everything that I would look for in a coach. He is 100 percent honest. He will find a way to win. He is a very, very knowledgeable baseball guy. He is just a great individual with everybody. The players will love him. Coach Tadlock will love working with Ray Hayward. He is very good working with pitchers. The way he will do things is always the right way. He will really take care of his pitchers. You have one of the best out there with Ray Hayward. He has everything you could ever look for in an assistant coach. He will be loyal, he is a very good baseball guy, can definitely judge talent, but he knows pitching. He is willing to work. He wants to have success, but he won’t look for success at someone else’s expense. Everyone will love working with Ray Hayward.”
Mike Humphreys – Former Texas Tech Player, Former New York Yankees Player, Former Detroit Tigers Minor League Instructor/Scout
“Ray is a really good baseball guy. He really knows his stuff and has always helped out a lot of players. He is going to not only bring the knowledge of what it takes at the college level but also at the next level. Maybe some people don’t think that is important, but if you know how to be successful at a higher level, I think that helps give you a big leg up on being successful at the college level. I think the future is very bright for the Red Raiders.”