Tuesday, August 25, 2015

#475 Jeff Reardon

About the Front: Right-handed pitchers are never described as "crafty", but Jeff Reardon is assuming a very crafty pose and expression.

About the Back: By the end of the 1992 season, Reardon was the all-time leader in saves, having passed Rollie Fingers' career mark of 341. But Lee Smith was just two saves behind Jeff, and would overtake him in 1993.

Triple Play:

1. He was the first pitcher in major league history to have 40-save seasons in both the National League and the American League.

2. Jeff pitched 4.2 scoreless innings in four appearances in the 1987 World Series and recorded the save in Minnesota's Game Seven victory with a perfect inning of work.

3. Sadly, Reardon's 20-year-old son died of a drug overdose in 2004. The ex-pitcher spiraled into depression and also had a pair of physical health scares in the months following. Late in 2005, he was arrested for committing armed robbery at a jewelry store in the Gardens Mall in Palm Beach Gardens, FL. Eventually, Reardon was found not guilty by reason of drug-induced insanity. It sounds like he's doing much better in recent years.

11-Year-Old Kevin Says: The real shame of Reardon's 1993 stint with the Reds was that they compelled him to shave his trademark beard. Facial hair restrictions in baseball are stupid.

Bill James Said: "Pitched well the first half (2.08 ERA) but badly the second (6.67)."

On This Date in 1993: August 25. The Braves complete a three-game sweep of the Giants with a 9-1 blowout. Greg Maddux wins his 15th game by breezing through eight six-hit innings and Atlanta bashes six home runs, including two apiece by Fred McGriff and David Justice. San Francisco's once-comfortable lead over the second-place Braves in the NL West is cut to 4.5 games.

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