Dennis Eckersley is widely considered to be the best relief pitcher in the history of Major League Baseball. During his 24-year career in the big leagues he racked up 390 saves and 197 wins while posting a career ERA of .350 with 2,401 strikeouts in 3,285 innings. Eckersley began his career with the Indians in 1975 as a starter and was a front line starter with the Indians, Boston Red Sox and Chicago Cubs from 1975 to 1986 before moving to the bullpen in 1987. The following year he led the big leagues with 45 saves and never turned back. Unlike today’s closers, Eckersley’s saves often came in three or more innings of work. In 1992 he was named both the American League MVP and AL Cy Young Award winner after leading the league with 51 saves in 65 appearances and posting a meniscal 1.91 ERA. His numerous accolades include six All-Star selections, two AL Rolaids Relif Man of the Year Awards and an ALCS MVP Award in 1988. In 1977 Eckersley pitched a no-hitter and would go on to earn the ultimate achievement by leading the Athletics to a World Series title in 1989. Eckersley is a member of both the Athletics and Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2004 during his first year of eligibility
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