Rick Mahler (August 5, 1953 - March 2, 2005) was a starting pitcher in Major League Baseball who played for the Atlanta Braves (1979-1988, 1991), Cincinnati Reds (1989-1990) and Montreal Expos (1991). His brother Mickey was also a major league pitcher, with the two being teammates in 1979.
In a 13-year career, Mahler posted a 96-111 record with 952 strikeouts and a 3.99 ERA in 1951.1 innings.
A native of Austin, Texas, Mahler graduated from John Jay High School and then attended Trinity University. After being signed by the Braves as an amateur free agent in 1975, he made his debut in the 1979 season.
Mahler started on opening day for the Braves in the 1982 season, when Atlanta went on to win the National League West title, and made four straight opening day starts beginning in 1985. In 1987, he tied an NL record with his third opening day shutout. His best season came in 1985, when he went 17-15 with a 3.48 ERA.
Mahler pitched twice in the playoffs, with the Braves in 1982, and in 1990 with the Cincinnati team that went on to win the 1990 World Series. He also appeared in 10 games with the Expos in 1991 before returning to Atlanta in the mid-season.
After retiring, Mahler served as a minor league pitching coach for the Kansas City Royals and Florida Marlins, and was a roving instructor for the St. Louis Cardinals. He also managed St. Louis' Double-A affiliate in the Texas League from 1996-1997.
Mahler died at age 51 of a heart attack at home in Jupiter, Florida, while preparing for his second season as a minor league pitching coach for the New York Mets.