It is Pat Hentgen’s 54th birthday today.
Pat will always be one of my favourite Blue Jays.
He was the Cy Young winner (the first Jay to win the award) in 1996, going 20-10 with a 3.22 ERA and pitching an outstanding 265.2 innings. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a starter throw 250 innings or more? He also made 4 All-Star teams. And he has two World Series rings. He didn’t pitch in the 1992 playoffs, but he had a win in the 1993 World Series against the Phillies. He was in line to pitch game seven before Joe Carter ended the series in game 6.
As a Jay, he was 107-85 with a 4.28 ERA in 10 seasons, playing in 270 games, 238 starts.
He sits 4th in team history in WAR at 26.7. 5th in wins, innings pitched, strikeouts, and games started.
After the 1999 season, the Jays traded him to the Cardinals, with Paul Spoljaric for Alberto Castillo, Matt DeWitt, and Lance Painter. It wasn’t one of our better trades. After one season in St. Louis, he signed as a free agent with the Orioles. After three seasons, he returned to the Jays for one last season and retired.
He was 131-112 with 1 4.32 ERA in 344 games, 306 starts, and a 33.0 bWAR.
And he talked to us. So if you want to see the interview spread over five parts. One, two, three, four, and five.
Pat has kept in the organization. He was bullpen coach in 2011, then left after the season for family reasons, and then did that job again in 2013.
He did a few innings in the TV broadcast booth a few years back. He did an excellent job. I’d love to see him do it more often.
Happy birthday Pat. I hope it is a good one.
And Santiago Espinal turns 28 today.
Espinal had a very nice rookie season, hitting .311/.376/.405 in 92 games and then made the AL All-Star team in his second season. His offensive numbers didn’t look as good as his rookie season, but with his terrific glove, they were plenty good enough. I wonder if he’ll lose his full-time job with Merrifield on the team next year.
Happy Birthday, Santiago. I hope it is a good one.