This Day in Baseball History: June 7th, 1975

I’m guessing Josh loves the ‘stache. I know I do.

On June 7, 1975:

The Kansas City Royals sign Dan Quisenberry.

After a sparkling college career at Leverne College, Dan Quisenberry wasn’t a hot prospect, but Rosey Gilhousen of the Kansas City Royals thought he was worth something. Quisenberry didn’t throw very hard, but he could throw accurately. He slowly worked his way through the minor-league ranks, and he usually kept his BB/9 below 2, which helped keep his ERA’s below 3. In 1979, Quisenberry finally got his chance, and he did pretty well, throwing 40 innings with a 3.15 ERA. However, he only had 13 strikeouts (though also only 5 walks).

Manager Jim Frey suggested he learn the submarine delivery from Pittsburgh Pirate reliever Ken Tekulve. If he was going to spend so much time in the strike zone, he needed more than a mediocre fastball. With the new delivery, he had the deception and a sinking fastball that would keep the ball in the ballpark.

From 1980-1985, Quisenberry would be one of the most effective relievers in the majors. In all but the strike-shortened season, Quisenberry threw around 130 innings, saved 35-40 games, and had a mid-2 ERA in each season. His K/9 was never really above 3, but his BB/9 was always around 1. Combine that with his groundballs, and teams had a very difficult time with him. From 1982-1985, he was always in the top 3 of Cy Young voting. Although he signed a lifetime contract with the Royals in 1983, the Royals would release him in 1988 after a rough go of it. Quisenberry would retire two seasons later.

Trivia Time
In 1996, Quisenberry did not receive the necessary votes for continuation in the Hall of Fame voting. What other closer did while having very similar statistics?

Yesterday’s Answer –> Garry Templeton


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