Sunday, May 6, 2012
Happy Birthday, Larry Andersen!
Larry Andersen pitched 699 games in 17 seasons spread over 20 years, starting with three games for the 1975 Indians, ending with the strike in '94 during his second stint with the Phillies. Before coming to San Diego via free agency for the '91 and '92 seasons, Andersen also pitched for the Mariners, Philadelphia, Houston and the Red Sox, famously being the centerpiece of what is arguably the best or worst trade of all time, depending on perspective. The Red Sox got a good relief pitcher for 15 games; the Astros got a franchise icon and Hall Of Fame caliber first baseman for 15 years. Though, yes, he'll forever best be known as the guy who got traded for Jeff Bagwell, Andersen was actually a very good reliever year in and year out for a long time, checking out with a career 121 ERA+ and, less importantly, a 3.15 ERA. He was even better in his time with the Padres, putting up a 136 and 2.74, respectively, in 82 innings over 72 games, chalking up 15 saves in that time. These days Andersen works as a TV color guy for the Phillies and still manages to find his way into the news.