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Happy Birthday Dave Stewart

Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Bernstein Associates/Getty Images

Since we are annoyingly short of baseball news unless you count the Owners saying that there would be negotiations every day this coming week. Since the last time they met for only 15 minutes, that means there should be a solid hour of negotiating in the coming week.

We have a couple of birthdays today:

Dave Stewart turns 65 today.

Stewart pitched for 16 seasons in the MLB. He was drafted in the 16th round of the 1975 Amateur Draft by the Dodgers. He made it to the majors, for, well, half a cup of coffee, in 1978 (1 game, 2 innings pitched). He didn’t make it back until 1981, when he made 32 relief appearances in the strike-shortened season. But that was enough to earn him a World Series ring when the Dodgers (after beating out the Expos in the NLCS, stupid Rick Monday), beat the Yankees for their first World Series win wince 1965.

Stewart was traded to the Rangers in 1983. From there he was traded to the Phillies, in 1985, but then was released after a total of 16 innings.

It was with the A’s that he became a star. In eight seasons, in Oakland, he had a 119-78 record, 3.73 ERA in 257 games, 245 starts. He finished second, third (twice) and third in Cy Young voting and picked up one more World Series ring.

The Jays signed him as a free agent, before the 1993 season.

In 1983, he went 12-8 with a 5.18 ERA in 26 starts, 163 innings. But he made two terrific starts against the White Sox in the ALCS, getting 2 wins, earning the ALCS MVP award. He went 6 innings in our game 2 win, allowing just 1 run, before handing the ball over to Al Leiter and Duane Ward to hold the 3-1 win. And he went 7.1 innings in game 6 to get the win (with Ward getting the save again) that sent us to our second World Series.

Stewart didn’t have as great a time in the World Series, losing game one and leaving game six after a Lenny Dykstra 3-run homer in the seventh inning (Stewart started the inning walk, single, home run before Cito pulled him, our 5-1 lead had shrunk to a 5-4 lead). Danny Cox and Al Leiter each gave up a run each that inning.

But you likely remember what happened in the bottom of the ninth in that game.

Dave’s 1994 season wasn’t as good as his 1993 season, going 7-8 in 22 starts, 133.1 innings in the lockout/strike-shortened season. Stewart signed with the A’s, and had a 3-7 record, with a 6.89 ERA in 16 starts, in another shortened season and that was his career.

After his playing days, he worked as an assistant GM, and pitching coach for several teams, including a couple of seasons of doing both jobs for the Jays. I’ve made a fair bit of fun of his part in the trade of Woody Williams for Joey Hamilton.

He ran a sports agency company for a few years and then got the job of GM for the Diamondbacks. In two seasons at the helm the team had a 148-176 record and was fired.

My opinion of Stewart improved a lot when, talking about Trevor Bauer, he said, in all-cap “HE BROKE THE UNWRITTEN RULE ON HOW YOU SHOULD TREAT WOMEN!”. Nice to see someone say that.

Happy Birthday, Dave. I hope is it a good one.


Miguel Batista turns 51 today.

Miguel also spent two seasons with the Jays, in the middle of an 18-year career. He signed as a free agent before the 2004 season.

In 2004, he started the season in the rotation. In 31 starts, he had a 10-12 record with a 4.88 ERA. Then, in mid-September, the team moved him to the bullpen, where he had 5 saves. They kept him in the pen for the 2005 season, and he racked up 31 saves, with a 4.10 ERA.

Miguel is 11th on the team list in saves, at 36.

Career, he had a 102-115 record, a 4.48 ERA and 41 saves in 658 games and 248 starts.

Happy Birthday, Miguel.