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Mark Eichhorn

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Mark Anthony Eichhorn

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[edit] Biographical Information

Mark Eichhorn is the brother of ex-pro baseball player Dave Eichhorn and the father of Kevin Eichhorn.

He developed his submarine/sidearm style of throwing in the Florida Instructional League after the 1984 season, and suddenly his pedestrian stuff became just about unhittable when thrown from his unusual arm angle. It paid quick dividends as he was back in the majors with the Toronto Blue Jays in 1986 and had one of the great seasons of all time by a relief pitcher: he went 14-6, with 10 saves, pitched 69 games and put up a sparkling 1.72 ERA in 157 innings, only giving up 105 hits and striking out 166 batters. He never quite repeated that level of dominance, but he led the 1987 American League with 89 appearances, during which he had a 10-6 record and pitched 127 2/3 innings with a 3.17 ERA. The Jays came agonizingly close to a division title that year, losing out to the Detroit Tigers after an epic battle that went down to the season's final week-end.

After pitching for the Atlanta Braves in 1989 and for the California Angels from 1990 to 1992, Eichhorn was re-acquired by the Blue Jays in mid-season in 1992, just in time to be part of their two World Series-winning teams in 1992 and 1993. Now relegated to a support role in the Jays' bullpen, he pitched one game in all four of the team's post-seasons series in that biennium, not giving up a single run in 4 1/3 innings.

Eichhorn had one more very good season with the Baltimore Orioles in 1994, when he was 6-5, 2.15, in 43 games, pitching 71 innings. He missed the entire 1995 season with a injury, however, then came back to pitch 24 games for the Angels in 1996. He was 1-2 with a 5.04 ERA in 30 1/3 innings but went down with an injury once again. After missing all of 1997, he attempted a comeback in the Tampa Bay Rays organization in 1998, playing for the AAA Durham Bulls and going a creditable 5-3, 3.88 with 18 saves in 53 games. He was 37 by then and did not figure in the expansion team's longer term plans, so he did not get a chance to return to the Show. He tried one more comeback in 2000, with the Blue Jays once again, and he pitched extremely well for the Class A Dunedin Blue Jays and AAA Syracuse SkyChiefs, putting up an 0.83 ERA in 21 2/3 innings, but arm woes got the best of him again before he could return for one more shot at the major leagues.

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