This Date in Baseball History – May 24th

Justin Verlander won the American League Most Valuable Player and Cy Young Awards in the same year in 2011, becoming just the fifth pitcher in the American League (and sixth in the whole of the Majors) to achieve the feat. Dennis Eckersley was the last to do it as the closer for the Oakland Athletics in 1992. Three years later, on May 24th, 1995, Eckersley became the sixth pitcher to record 300 saves in a career, helping the A’s hang on for a 5-3 win over Baltimore at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum.

Eckersley made the switch from starter to reliever after moving to Oakland from the Chicago Cubs as part of a five-player deal in 1986, thirteen years into his career. The move took some time to pay dividends, but Eckersly was an All-Star in 1988 and led the AL in saves as Tony LaRussa’s A’s won the American League pennant, the first of three consecutive for Oakland (plus a World Series championship in 1989).

Mick Gillispie told the story of Eckersley’s milestone during Saturday’s game between the Smokies and Mobile BayBears.

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Categories: This Date in Baseball History


The Smokies Radio Network is the official radio network for the Chicago Cubs AA affiliate, the Tennessee Smokies. Daily broadcasts begin with the Pilot-Oscar Mayer pre-game show airing 15 minutes before every game. Following the game the broadcast concludes with the Edward Jones Investments post-game show. The Smokies Radio Network staff includes the Director of Broadcasting Mick Gillispie, Sr. Broadcast Assistant Greg Young, Broadcast Assistant Keith Brake and Broadcast Intern James Rowe.


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