Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Most Saves in First Season

Quick! Name the nine players to record 20+ saves in the first season of their career! A hint: they all debuted after 1960. Okay, maybe that's not a real hint, but saves are a more recent phenomenon in baseball history. Generally veteran relievers are given the first crack at being the closer for a team but every once in a while a rookie gets the call. Here are the aforementioned nine 20+ saves first season players:
  1. Kazuhiro Sasaki, 37, 2000 Seattle Mariners
  2. Billy Koch, 31, 1999 Toronto Blue Jays
  3. Takashi Saito, 24, 2006 Los Angeles Dodgers
  4. Dick Radatz, 24, 1962 Boston Red Sox
  5. Huston Street, 23, 2005 Oakland Athletics
  6. Doug Corbett, 23, 1980 Minnesota Twins
  7. Ken Tatum, 22, 1969 California Angels
  8. Salome Barojas, 21, 1982 Chicago White Sox
  9. Doug Bird, 20, 1973 Kansas City Royals
The leader in first-season saves for 2007 was Joakim Soria of the Kansas City Royals with 17. Only five other pitchers recorded one or more: Hideki Okajima (5), Sean Gallagher (1), Edwar Ramirez (1), Joba Chamberlain (1), and Marcus Gwyn (1).

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