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‘Hall call’ for former Tigers great

John Hiller

IRON MOUNTAIN — Breitung Township’s John Hiller, a former Detroit Tigers relief ace, will be enshrined in the Ontario (Canada) Sports Hall of Fame on Oct, 2.

Hiller will join five other sports legends — hockey’s Paul Coffey and Bob Gainey, harness racing’s John Campbell, lacrosse’s Bob Allan and rowing’s Marnie McBean — at the ceremony.

“Their outstanding achievements in sport in Ontario are well documented and their election to the Ontario Sports Hall of Fame is richly deserved,” according to the Ontario Sports Hall of Fame.

John Hiller, who grew up in Scarborough, Ontario, played his entire career with the Detroit Tigers.

After suffering a heart attack in 1971, he returned to the team and recorded 38 saves in 1973 – a major league record until 1983, and a team record until 2000.

He also set an American League record by winning 17 games in relief, against 14 losses, in 1974 which was later equalled by Bill Campbell who went 17-5 in 1976.

Hiller was previously inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame, Canadian Sports Hall of Fame and Michigan Hall of Fame.

The Ontario Sports Hall of Fame induction ceremony and awards gala will take place in Toronto’s The Westin Harbour Castle.

The Ontario Sports Hall of Fame (OSHOF) is a volunteer-driven, not-for-profit organization devoted to honoring Ontario’s greatest athletes, builders and writers for their lifelong contributions to the Ontario sports scene.