Results tagged ‘ starting pitcher ’

November 26 – Happy Birthday Sam Militello

MilitelloBy 1992, even the most loyal and optimistic Yankee fans were wondering if our favorite baseball team would ever be winners again. George Steinbrenner had gotten himself suspended for life but not before he presided over the disembowelment of his ball club. The Stump Merrill era had just ended and somebody named Buck Showalter was now skippering the club.

Melido Perez was the ace of Buck’s pitching staff that year,which should tell you just how bad that staff was. It was clear to me that if the Yankees were ever going to be contenders again, the team had to find some special arms.

That’s why we all got pretty excited when today’s Pinstripe Birthday Celebrant showed up in the Bronx during the dog days of August that year. A native of Tampa, Sam Militello was a tall fireballing right-hander  who had just won two consecutive pitcher of the year awards in the Yankee farm system. When he won his first three big league decisions the immediate reaction of Yankee Universe was not just joy but also “where the hell have they been hiding this kid and why?”

Unfortunately, Militello’s brilliance did not last. He lost his next three decisions and was then shelved for the remainder of the ’92 season with a tired arm. He bounced back with a strong spring training performance and the Yanks brought him north to start the ’93 season. After his first three regular season appearances however, his ERA was near seven and he couldn’t get the ball over the plate. The Yanks sent him down at the end of April. It was his inability to throw strikes and a series of arm injuries that prevented Militello from ever again throwing a pitch in the big leagues.

He shares his birthday with this Yankee Hall of Famer, this former starting pitcher and this one-time Yankee reliever.

Year Tm W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1992 NYY 3 3 .500 3.45 9 9 0 0 0 0 60.0 43 24 23 6 32 42 1.250
1993 NYY 1 1 .500 6.75 3 2 0 0 0 0 9.1 10 8 7 1 7 5 1.821
2 Yrs 4 4 .500 3.89 12 11 0 0 0 0 69.1 53 32 30 7 39 47 1.327
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/25/2013.

November 24 – Happy Birthday Bob Friend

Strangely, Bob Friend almost helped the Yankees win the 1960 World Series. I use the word strangely because Friend did not become a Yankee until 1965. At the time of the ’60 Fall Classic he was still the ace of the Pittsburgh Pirates’ staff, who had won 18 games during that regular season and would end up winning 192 decisions before being traded by the Bucs to New York for reliever Pete Mikkelsen. The veteran right-hander, who was nicknamed “The Warrior,” started the second and sixth games of the Series and was plastered by the very talented Yankee lineup. Friend pitched a total of just six innings in those two appearances, surrendering thirteen hits and nine earned runs in the process. He would never again pitch in the postseason. When he started his one and only season in pinstripes losing four of his first five decisions, the Yankees sold him to the Mets. The Lafayette, IN native finished that season with a 5-8 record for the Amazin’s and then retired.

Another Yankee born on today’s date was this popular infielder with Hollywood good looks and this former Yankee reliever.

Year Tm W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1966 NYY 1 4 .200 4.84 12 8 2 0 0 0 44.2 61 25 24 2 9 22 1.567
16 Yrs 197 230 .461 3.58 602 497 56 163 36 11 3611.0 3772 1652 1438 286 894 1734 1.292
PIT (15 yrs) 191 218 .467 3.55 568 477 46 161 35 10 3480.1 3610 1575 1372 273 869 1682 1.287
NYM (1 yr) 5 8 .385 4.40 22 12 8 2 1 1 86.0 101 52 42 11 16 30 1.360
NYY (1 yr) 1 4 .200 4.84 12 8 2 0 0 0 44.2 61 25 24 2 9 22 1.567
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/24/2013.

November 16 – Happy Birthday Dwight Gooden

For those first initial glorious years of “Doc’s” career, he was the best pitcher in all of baseball. He won the Rookie of the Year award his first season with the Mets, the Cy Young Award his second, and a World Championship in his third. He won 24 games, led the National League in strikeouts and ERA, and threw eight shutouts when he was just 20 years of age. Unfortunately for Gooden and the Mets, he couldn’t handle his immense success. He gave it all up for cocaine.

George Steinbrenner made Doc a Yankee in 1996 and Gooden responded with 11 wins and that glorious no-hitter against Seattle. But the Gooden-pitched Yankee game I’ll remember most is the fourth game of the 1997 ALDS against Cleveland. Even though New York was leading that series two games to one at the time, the Indians had hit both a hurting David Cone and a healthy Andy Pettitte hard in earlier games. Doc was Torre’s surprise choice to start the next game at Jacobs Field. When he took the mound, it had been ten days since he last pitched and Gooden probably surmised that New York was not going to re-sign him for ’98.  He had gone a lackluster 9-7 that regular season and Yankee fans like me would not have been surprised if the hard-hitting Indians got to him early. Instead, Gooden was masterful for about as long as he could be. The only blemish had been a David Justice home run and when Torre came to the mound to take him out of the game with two outs in the bottom of the sixth, the Yankees were leading 2-1.

Of course, New York went on to lose that game and that series but Doc had certainly impressed the heck out of me. He must have impressed the Indians quite a bit as well because less than two months later, Cleveland signed him to a two year deal for over $5.5 million. It seemed Gooden had conquered his demons at last, but of course we have found out since that he had not. What could have been.

Today is also my beautiful wife Rosemary’s birthday and my lovely sister-in-law Maria’s birthday too. Happy with love birthday ladies.

Year Tm W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1996 NYY 11 7 .611 5.01 29 29 0 1 1 0 170.2 169 101 95 19 88 126 1.506
1997 NYY 9 5 .643 4.91 20 19 0 0 0 0 106.1 116 61 58 14 53 66 1.589
2000 NYY 4 2 .667 3.36 18 5 3 0 0 2 64.1 66 28 24 8 21 31 1.352
16 Yrs 194 112 .634 3.51 430 410 4 68 24 3 2800.2 2564 1198 1091 210 954 2293 1.256
NYM (11 yrs) 157 85 .649 3.10 305 303 1 67 23 1 2169.2 1898 823 747 123 651 1875 1.175
NYY (3 yrs) 24 14 .632 4.67 67 53 3 1 1 2 341.1 351 190 177 41 162 223 1.503
CLE (2 yrs) 11 10 .524 4.92 49 45 0 0 0 0 249.0 262 149 136 31 118 171 1.526
TBD (1 yr) 2 3 .400 6.63 8 8 0 0 0 0 36.2 47 32 27 14 20 23 1.827
HOU (1 yr) 0 0 9.00 1 1 0 0 0 0 4.0 6 4 4 1 3 1 2.250
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/18/2013.

November 14 – Happy Birthday Harry Howell

howellEvidently, “Handsome” Harry Howell could have taught A-Rod a thing or two about flirting with female fans in the stands at Yankee games. According to this excellent article written by Eric Sallee, it was this Jersey native’s roving eye that caused his divorce from the first Mrs. Howell.

After three seasons of playing in the National League, Howell migrated to the newly formed American League as a member of manager John McGraw’s 1901 Baltimore Oriole starting rotation which was also the first starting rotation in official Yankee franchise history. In that inaugural season, he and Joe McGinnity became the first Yankee pitchers to lose 20 games in a season. In 1902, the Baltimore team disintegrated after McGraw quit at midseason and with Howell going just 9-15, the team went on to finish the year with a 50-88 record. That’s when League founder and president, Ban Johnson exerted his near-dictatorial control and relocated the team to New York City.

It proved to be a fortunate move for Howell because when he got to New York he became teammates with Jack Chesbro. The former Pirate ace had one of the game’s most effective spitballs and he was more than happy to show Howell how to throw one of his own. Handsome Harry proved to be a quick study. He spent most of the ’03 season experimenting with the spitter, while still relying more heavily on his fastball and curve. He went 9-6 during the Yankees’ first season in the Big Apple and on April 23rd of that year, he became the first pitcher in New York Yankee history (excluding the franchise’s two years in Baltimore) to win a game, when he beat the Senators 7-2.

The following spring, Yankee skipper Clark Griffith traded Howell to the St. Louis Browns for pitcher Jack Powell. It was in St. Louis that Howell perfected the pitch taught to him by Chesbro. During the next six seasons, he threw one of the nastiest, most-loaded-up spitters in the game with great results. His ERA during his Browns’ career, which consisted of almost 1,600 innings pitched was a pretty incredible 2.06.

Howell shares his birthday with this former Yankee outfielder and this one too.

Year Tm W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1903 NYY 9 6 .600 3.53 25 15 10 13 0 0 155.2 140 79 61 4 44 62 1.182
13 Yrs 131 146 .473 2.74 340 282 53 244 20 6 2567.2 2435 1158 781 27 677 986 1.212
SLB (7 yrs) 78 91 .462 2.06 201 173 23 150 16 5 1580.2 1325 549 362 8 390 712 1.085
NYY (3 yrs) 32 42 .432 3.77 88 72 16 64 2 0 649.1 716 403 272 14 171 188 1.366
BRO (2 yrs) 8 5 .615 3.93 23 12 11 9 2 0 128.1 146 80 56 4 47 28 1.504
BLN (1 yr) 13 8 .619 3.91 28 25 3 21 0 1 209.1 248 126 91 1 69 58 1.514
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/14/2013.

November 13 – Happy Birthday Mel Stottlemyre

Just as he was during his tenure as the team’s pitching coach, Mel Stottlemyre was under- appreciated as a Yankee starting pitcher. He did the bulk of his hurling during one of the bleakest ten-year periods in Pinstripe history. Yet he finished his career with a 2.97 ERA, 40 shutouts and averaged 16 victories per season.

Born in Hazelton, MO in 1941, Stottlemyre became one of my favorite players when the Yankees brought him up from the minors at the 1964 mid season and he won nine of twelve decisions to help the team come from behind and win the pennant. He then pitched two great games against the Cardinals in that season’s Fall Classic. I still remember watching the final game of that Series when Yankee Manager,Yogi Berra gave the 22-year-old right-hander the starting assignment a third time on just two-days rest because Whitey Ford couldn’t lift his left arm. Mel gave up three runs in the fourth inning on a walk and a bunch of singles. Berra’s decision to replace Stottlemyre with Al Downing an inning later immediately backfired when Downing gave up a lead-off home run to Lou Brock and a couple of more hits and the Cardinals scored three more runs. That negated the impact of Mickey Mantle’s three-run blast the following inning. The Yankees and Stottlemyre lost the game, Berra lost his job and my favorite team didn’t get back to a World Series for the next 11 years.

My anti-Yankee friends like to point out that Stottlemyre did almost all of his pitching before the American League implemented the designated hitter rule in 1973. This, they contend, explains why his ERA and shutout numbers are much more impressive than today’s starting pitchers. Not so fast. Stottlemyre’s record during the 1973 season, his only full year pitching to a DH, shows 16 victories, 4 shutouts, and an ERA of 3.07 for a Yankee team that had the third worst rated offense in the league that season.

In fact, if it were not for a rotator cuff injury that ended his career at the age of 32, in 1974, I believe Stottlemyre would have remained an effective sinker-balling starter for the great Yankee teams of the mid-seventies. In the process, he might have won a World Series, close to fifty more career victories and had his uniform number retired.

Besides pitching, the other thing Mel did very well was help others become better pitchers. Both his sons ended up pitching in the big leagues and Mel was the pitching coach for both the 1986 World Champion Mets and the four Joe Torre-led World Champion Yankee teams.

Year Tm W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1964 NYY 9 3 .750 2.06 13 12 0 5 2 0 96.0 77 26 22 3 35 49 1.167
1965 NYY 20 9 .690 2.63 37 37 0 18 4 0 291.0 250 99 85 18 88 155 1.162
1966 NYY 12 20 .375 3.80 37 35 2 9 3 1 251.0 239 116 106 18 82 146 1.279
1967 NYY 15 15 .500 2.96 36 36 0 10 4 0 255.0 235 96 84 20 88 151 1.267
1968 NYY 21 12 .636 2.45 36 36 0 19 6 0 278.2 243 86 76 21 65 140 1.105
1969 NYY 20 14 .588 2.82 39 39 0 24 3 0 303.0 267 105 95 19 97 113 1.201
1970 NYY 15 13 .536 3.09 37 37 0 14 0 0 271.0 262 110 93 23 84 126 1.277
1971 NYY 16 12 .571 2.87 35 35 0 19 7 0 269.2 234 100 86 16 69 132 1.124
1972 NYY 14 18 .438 3.22 36 36 0 9 7 0 260.0 250 99 93 13 85 110 1.288
1973 NYY 16 16 .500 3.07 38 38 0 19 4 0 273.0 259 112 93 13 79 95 1.238
1974 NYY 6 7 .462 3.58 16 15 1 6 0 0 113.0 119 54 45 7 37 40 1.381
11 Yrs 164 139 .541 2.97 360 356 3 152 40 1 2661.1 2435 1003 878 171 809 1257 1.219
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/13/2013.

November 6 – Happy Birthday John Candelaria

The New York Yankees were a very competitive team from 1982 until the wheels came off in 1989. In fact, no team in baseball won more games than New York did during that time but, they failed to make the playoffs in each of those seasons. With Don Mattingly, Dave Winfield and Ricky Henderson in their lineup for much of that decade, offense wasn’t the problem for New York but starting pitching and managerial consistency was. It seemed as if every season, the Yankees had at least one new manager and three new starters in their rotation. In 1988, the Yankee front office signed former Pirate ace, John Candelaria to a free agent contract and hoped he would anchor their staff. For half a season, the “Candy Man” did just that, going 8-2 and helping New York get out to a quick start and take the Eastern Division lead for Manager Billy Martin, who was on his fifth tour of duty that year as Yankee skipper. As usual, however, Martin was fired on June 23rd of that season, when Clyde King, George Steinbrenner’s personal scout told the Boss that Martin had behaved unprofessionally by leaving reliever Tim Stoddard in a game in which he was getting shelled. King felt it was because Billy disliked Stoddard. By the time Lou Piniella took over for Martin,  Candelaria’s knee was hurting and he won just five of his last ten decisions. The Yankees ended up finishing in fifth place, but were just 3.5 games behind Division winning Boston. That 1988 season really was the straw that ended up breaking the Yankee’s back. The next four Yankee teams finished below five hundred under five different Managers, going through a whole bunch of different starting pitchers. Martin died drunk, when his pickup truck drove off the road and Steinbrenner was actually banned from the game for his role in the Howie Spira episode.

When Candelaria got off to a 3-3 start for New York in 1989, he was traded to the Expos for an infielder named Mike Blowers. The New York City-born southpaw tried to make the Yankees winners again but in the end, the Candy Man couldn’t.

Also born on this date was this one-time Yankee post season hero and this former Yankee outfielder.

Year Tm W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1988 NYY 13 7 .650 3.38 25 24 1 6 2 1 157.0 150 69 59 18 23 121 1.102
1989 NYY 3 3 .500 5.14 10 6 1 1 0 0 49.0 49 28 28 8 12 37 1.245
19 Yrs 177 122 .592 3.33 600 356 82 54 13 29 2525.2 2399 1038 935 245 592 1673 1.184
PIT (12 yrs) 124 87 .588 3.17 345 271 42 45 9 16 1873.0 1763 731 660 172 436 1159 1.174
CAL (3 yrs) 25 11 .694 3.77 49 49 0 2 2 0 279.1 265 133 117 28 70 208 1.199
LAD (2 yrs) 3 6 .333 3.36 109 0 21 0 0 7 59.0 51 25 22 4 24 61 1.271
NYY (2 yrs) 16 10 .615 3.80 35 30 2 7 2 1 206.0 199 97 87 26 35 158 1.136
MIN (1 yr) 7 3 .700 3.39 34 1 10 0 0 4 58.1 55 23 22 9 9 44 1.097
NYM (1 yr) 2 0 1.000 5.84 3 3 0 0 0 0 12.1 17 8 8 1 3 10 1.622
MON (1 yr) 0 2 .000 3.31 12 0 2 0 0 0 16.1 17 8 6 3 4 14 1.286
TOR (1 yr) 0 3 .000 5.48 13 2 5 0 0 1 21.1 32 13 13 2 11 19 2.016
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/6/2013.

October 30 – Happy Birthday Marty McHale

marty mchaleI’m sure you never heard of former Yankee pitcher Marty McHale. Heck, he only pitched for New York for just three seasons, compiled a pretty horrible 11-27 record doing so and his pinstriped career began 100 years ago, so why would you? But the right-handed McHale was anything but just an ex Yankee pitcher nobody ever heard of.

For starters, he was actually very talented on the mound. He was known for his spitball but he also threw a real good curve and a pretty good fastball. At the University of Maine, he was a three-sport star and when he threw three consecutive no-hitters for the Black Bears’ baseball team, several major league clubs came calling. A native of Stoneham, Massachusetts, which is a suburb of Boston, McHale accepted a $2,000 bonus to sign with the Red Sox. He then spent the next three seasons bouncing back and forth between the minors and Beantown, trying to stick to the team’s big league roster.

He never did win a game for the Red Sox but he did establish a singing career. The guy was an incredible Irish tenor. Babe Ruth, who was famous for never remembering the face or the name of a teammate had no problem remembering McHale, telling reporters the pitcher had the best singing voice he ever heard. During his days with Boston, the pitcher became part of a singing group called the Red Sox quartet that became a very popular act around town. After joining the Yankees, McHale teamed up with the New York Giants Mike Donlin to form a very popular vaudeville act. The venerable Variety Magazine, thought enough of McHale’s vocal ability to dub him “Baseball’s Caruso.”

In any event, the Yankees purchased McHale’s contract in August of the 1913 regular season and Frank Chance, the New York skipper at the time, fell in love with the guy. He got seven starts in the next two months and though he was just 2-4 in those starts, his ERA was a very respectable 2.96.

The singing pitcher was good enough to earn the Opening Day pitching assignments for New York in both the 1914 and ’15 seasons and he won both games. But the Yankee ball clubs he pitched for were some of the worst in franchise history and McHale had a tough time earning winning decisions. He went 6-16 during his second year with the team and just 3-7 in 1915.

The Yankees then released him and he ended up pitching one more year in the big leagues before hanging up his glove for good after the 1916 season. He was 29 years-old with a wife and two boys at home. He probably realized careers in both baseball and show business were not conducive to a stable family life so he started a third career as a New York stockbroker. He retired from M. J. McHale Securities 52 years later. Baseball’s Caruso had conquered Wall Street too.

McHale shares his birthday with this former Yankee DHthis former Yankee third baseman, and this former Yankee reliever with a hard-to-pronounce last name.

Year Tm W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1913 NYY 2 4 .333 2.96 7 6 1 4 1 0 48.2 49 21 16 1 10 11 1.212
1914 NYY 6 16 .273 2.97 31 23 6 12 0 1 191.0 195 82 63 3 33 75 1.194
1915 NYY 3 7 .300 4.25 13 11 1 6 0 0 78.1 86 45 37 1 19 25 1.340
6 Yrs 11 30 .268 3.57 64 44 13 23 1 1 358.1 381 182 142 7 81 131 1.289
BOS (3 yrs) 0 3 .000 5.90 8 4 3 1 0 0 29.0 41 27 19 1 13 18 1.862
NYY (3 yrs) 11 27 .289 3.28 51 40 8 22 1 1 318.0 330 148 116 5 62 111 1.233
CLE (1 yr) 0 0 5.56 5 0 2 0 0 0 11.1 10 7 7 1 6 2 1.412
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 10/30/2013.

October 26 – Happy Birthday Steve Adkins

adkinsBy the time the Yankees were ready to give today’s Pinstripe Birthday Celebrant his first big league start, the team’s season was already over. It was early September of 1990, the Yanks were mired in last place in the AL East Divison standings with an atrocious 58-84 record and with Stump Merrill now calling the shots in New York’s dugout, the organization’s future looked anything but bright.

So all Yankee starting pitcher Steve Adkins does in his big league debut is take the mound against a pretty good Texas Ranger lineup and pitch hitless baseball. So how come you and I don’t remember Steve Adkins, since he remains the only pitcher in the last 28 years to give up no hits in his first big league start?

Well for one thing, the Yankees lost the game. Texas ended up beating them 5-4 that evening. Perhaps another reason we don’t remember Adkins’ no-hit debut was the fact that he issued eight walks that game. But the real reason this six foot six inch southpaw’s inaugural appearance as a Yankee pitcher is not seared into our memories is because it didn’t last very long, just one-and-a-third innings to be exact.

He was able to get out of the first inning without surrendering a run despite three walks with the help of a double play. But when he gave six straight batters free passes to first base in the second inning, Merrill had seen enough and he yanked the then twenty-five-year-old native of Chicago. He had thrown fifty pitches, surrendered three earned runs and became the first pitcher in half a century to give up no-hits and lose his big-league debut.

Adkins got four more chances to start that September and was actually progressing to the point where he was able to get his first win of the season with an eight-inning stint against the Brewers on September 28th. But then Merrill chose him to start the Yankees final game of the 1990 season against Detroit and four innings later he had given up seven hits, seven earned runs, and four more of those dreaded walks. He never pitched another game at the big league level.

Adkins shares his birthday with this former Yankee second baseman and this former Yankee shortstop.

Year Tm W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1990 NYY 1 2 .333 6.38 5 5 0 0 0 0 24.0 19 18 17 4 29 14 2.000
1 Yr 1 2 .333 6.38 5 5 0 0 0 0 24.0 19 18 17 4 29 14 2.000
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 10/26/2013.

October 11 – Happy Birthday Orlando Hernandez

duqueI loved watching El Duque work on the mound. His ability to throw so many different pitches from that winding and unwinding motion always left me with the impression that he was conducting an orchestra instead of just pitching a baseball game. At least 33 years old when he escaped from Cuba and signed with the Yankees in 1998, his first two seasons in pinstripes were his best, winning 29 games during that span and compiling the first four of what would become eight consecutive postseason wins for New York. I clearly remember always feeling confident the Yankees would do well in any big game with Hernandez as their starting pitcher. Even after his mediocre 2000 regular season, when he finished 12-13, El Duque managed to win three straight starts that postseason.

And after New York traded him in January of 2003, Yankee fans will never forget how Hernandez rejoined the team during the 2004 season and led New York back to the playoffs by winning eight of ten decisions. Then, after spending time with both the White Sox and the Diamondbacks, El Duque joined the Mets during the 2006 season and went 18-12 during his two seasons at Shea. Perhaps if he had escaped from Castro’s Cuba a decade earlier, he would be headed for Cooperstown.

El Duque shares his October 11th birthday with this former Yankee reliever.

Year Tm W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1998 NYY 12 4 .750 3.13 21 21 0 3 1 0 141.0 113 53 49 11 52 131 1.170
1999 NYY 17 9 .654 4.12 33 33 0 2 1 0 214.1 187 108 98 24 87 157 1.278
2000 NYY 12 13 .480 4.51 29 29 0 3 0 0 195.2 186 104 98 34 51 141 1.211
2001 NYY 4 7 .364 4.85 17 16 0 0 0 0 94.2 90 51 51 19 42 77 1.394
2002 NYY 8 5 .615 3.64 24 22 1 0 0 1 146.0 131 63 59 17 36 113 1.144
2004 NYY 8 2 .800 3.30 15 15 0 0 0 0 84.2 73 31 31 9 36 84 1.287
9 Yrs 90 65 .581 4.13 219 211 2 9 2 2 1314.2 1181 641 604 177 479 1086 1.263
NYY (6 yrs) 61 40 .604 3.96 139 136 1 8 2 1 876.1 780 410 386 114 304 703 1.237
NYM (2 yrs) 18 12 .600 3.88 47 44 0 1 0 0 264.1 212 122 114 37 105 240 1.199
ARI (1 yr) 2 4 .333 6.11 9 9 0 0 0 0 45.2 52 32 31 8 20 52 1.577
CHW (1 yr) 9 9 .500 5.12 24 22 1 0 0 1 128.1 137 77 73 18 50 91 1.457
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 10/11/2013.

October 8 – Happy Birthday Mike Morgan

MorganWhen you charted out Mike Morgan’s big league career it looked like a Vasco de Gama expedition. It began and almost ended when Morgan was just eighteen years old and the property of the irascible owner of the Oakland A’s, Charley Finley. It was 1978 and Finley had mismanaged the A’s World Champion rosters from the early 70’s into distant memories. He was looking for a way to reignite interest in his team and he decided to try and turn his first round draft choice into a teenage phee-nom. The young Morgan, a native of Tulare, California was not up to the task. Though he started strong with a complete game performance in his big league debut against the Orioles, it quickly became apparent the kid was not ready. After going 0-3, he was sent down to the minors, where he should have remained for at least two or three more years. But patience was not one of Finley’s virtues. Morgan was brought back to Oakland the following year and took quite a hammering in the 13 games he appeared.

The Yankees acquired the tall right hander after the 1980 postseason, in exchange for infielder, Fred Stanley. New York pitched Morgan at the double A level for a year and then called him up to the Bronx and made him part of the parent club’s starting rotation, in 1982. He certainly was more ready to face big league hitters as a 22-year-old. His numbers that season weren’t great but there were moments of brilliance that gave the Yankee announcers opportunities to remind listeners of his phee-nom roots and potential. Evidently, the team’s front office wasn’t listening because that December, they sent Morgan, speedy outfielder Dave Collins and future all-star slugger Fred McGriff to the Toronto Blue Jays for a well-traveled reliever named Dale Murray and somebody named Tom Dodd. It would turn out to be a horrible trade by the Yankee front office.

Morgan would go on to pitch 19 more seasons in the Majors and wear the uniforms of ten more big league teams. He would become an All Star with the Dodgers in 1991, set his career-high in wins with 16 a year later while pitching for the Cubs and win a World Series ring with Arizona in2001. He would pitch until 2002, finally hanging up his glove for good at the age of 42.

Morgan shares his birthday with this recent Yankee relieverthis former Yankee outfielder and this one-time Yankee hitting coach.

Year Tm W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB SO WHIP
1982 NYY 7 11 .389 4.37 30 23 2 2 0 0 150.1 167 77 73 15 67 71 1.557
22 Yrs 141 186 .431 4.23 597 411 56 46 10 8 2772.1 2943 1431 1303 270 938 1403 1.400
CHC (5 yrs) 30 35 .462 3.83 90 90 0 8 2 0 575.2 569 274 245 51 212 316 1.357
ARI (3 yrs) 7 6 .538 4.82 120 5 33 0 0 5 173.2 209 97 93 19 66 93 1.583
LAD (3 yrs) 33 36 .478 3.06 107 85 8 11 5 1 600.0 543 236 204 37 154 318 1.162
SEA (3 yrs) 24 35 .407 4.70 73 66 4 17 3 1 429.1 499 247 224 51 144 203 1.498
STL (2 yrs) 9 14 .391 4.55 35 35 0 1 0 0 209.2 232 111 106 24 65 101 1.417
OAK (2 yrs) 2 13 .133 6.12 16 16 0 3 0 0 89.2 121 69 61 8 58 17 1.996
CIN (2 yrs) 11 15 .423 4.42 36 35 0 1 0 0 189.1 193 100 93 15 56 122 1.315
MIN (1 yr) 4 2 .667 3.49 18 17 0 0 0 0 98.0 108 41 38 13 24 50 1.347
TEX (1 yr) 13 10 .565 6.24 34 25 1 1 0 0 140.0 184 108 97 25 48 61 1.657
NYY (1 yr) 7 11 .389 4.37 30 23 2 2 0 0 150.1 167 77 73 15 67 71 1.557
BAL (1 yr) 1 6 .143 5.43 22 10 6 2 0 1 71.1 70 45 43 6 23 29 1.304
TOR (1 yr) 0 3 .000 5.16 16 4 2 0 0 0 45.1 48 26 26 6 21 22 1.522
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 10/7/2013.