VISALIA, CA - The Visalia Rawhide send condolences to the family and friends of Doug "God" Harvey, who passed away this weekend at the age of 87.
Harvey had a 31-year career as a Major League umpire with the National League, working a total of 4,673 Major League Games. If there was a high-profile game in the 1970s or 1980s, Harvey was likely behind the plate. He officiated 9 National League Championship Series, 6 All-Star Games, and 5 World Series.
Harvey is one of 10 umpires that are enshrined in the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York, and was inducted in 2010. He was nicknamed "God" by the players because of his strict focus on the rules of the game and was a pioneer of waiting an extra split second after a play to ensure he got the call right.
Harvey's roots also reach to the California League, where he was an umpire from 1958 to 1960. He was so influential in his time in the California League that the Umpire of the Year Award in the modern California League is named after him. Harvey, who resided in nearby Springville, was inducted into the California League Hall of Fame prior to the 2017 California League All-Star Game at Rawhide Ballpark.
Harvey had been in hospice care and reportedly died of natural causes.
The Visalia Rawhide are a professional baseball team in the Class A Advanced California League and are the only professional sports team in Tulare and Kings counties. The team has been an affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks since 2007 and is entering their 72nd year of play in 2018. The Rawhide renovated their home at Recreation Ballpark in 2009 and have since become the largest gathering of individuals in Tulare County, having set an attendance record for the seventh time in the past eight season in 2017. In 2018, the Rawhide look to continue their reputation for hosting competitive baseball while providing affordable family entertainment. To be a part of the 2018 Visalia Rawhide season, please contact the Visalia Rawhide Ticket Office at 559.732.4433, visit us online at rawhidebaseball.com, or follow us on Facebook (TheRawhide), Instagram (@VisaliaRawhide), and Twitter (@VisaliaRawhide).
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.