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Reliever of the Year Award

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[edit] History

The Reliever of the Year was one of the annual awards given out by the Sporting News from 1960 to 2010. It was designed to honor the best relief pitcher in baseball and was the first official recognition of relief pitchers as a specific class of players. A winning player was chosen in each league. The award was often called the Fireman of the Year although this was never its official name. It should not be confused with the Japanese award called the Fireman of the Year.

In 1976, Major League Baseball introduced the Rolaids Relief Award which rapidly became the most prestigious award for relievers. The major difference between the two awards was that the MLB-sponsored award was based on a points system, whereas the one given out by the Sporting News was based on a vote conducted by the magazine based on subjective criteria. In practice, however, there was very little difference between the two lists of winners.

[edit] List of Winners

[edit] American League

Year Player Team ERA Wins Losses Saves Innings
Pitched
Strikeouts
1960 Mike Fornieles Boston Red Sox 2.64 10 5 14 109.0 64
1961 Luis Arroyo New York Yankees 2.19 15 5 29 119.0 87
1962 Dick Radatz Boston Red Sox 2.24 9 6 24 124.2 144
1963 Stu Miller Baltimore Orioles 2.24 5 8 27 112.1 114
1964 Dick Radatz Boston Red Sox 2.29 16 9 29 157.0 181
1965 Eddie Fisher Chicago White Sox 2.40 15 7 24 165.1 90
1966 Jack Aker Kansas City Athletics 1.99 8 4 32 113.0 68
1967 Minnie Rojas California Angels 2.52 12 9 27 121.2 83
1968 Wilbur Wood Chicago White Sox 1.87 13 12 16 159.0 74
1969 Ron Perranoski Minnesota Twins 2.11 9 10 31 119.2 62
1970 Ron Perranoski Minnesota Twins 2.43 7 8 34 111.0 55
1971 Ken Sanders Milwaukee Brewers 1.91 7 12 31 136.1 80
1972 Sparky Lyle New York Yankees 1.92 9 5 35 107.2 75
1973 John Hiller Detroit Tigers 1.44 10 5 38 125.1 124
1974 Terry Forster Chicago White Sox 3.62 7 8 24 134.1 105
1975 Rich Gossage Chicago White Sox 1.84 9 8 26 141.2 30
1976 Bill Campbell Minnesota Twins 3.01 17 5 20 167.2 115
1977 Bill Campbell Boston Red Sox 2.96 13 9 31 140.0 114
1978 Rich Gossage New York Yankees 2.01 10 11 27 134.1 122
1979 Mike Marshall Minnesota Twins 2.65 10 15 32 142.2 81
tie Jim Kern Texas Rangers 1.57 13 5 29 143.0 136
1980 Dan Quisenberry Kansas City Royals 3.09 12 7 33 128.1 37
1981 Rollie Fingers Milwaukee Brewers 1.04 6 3 28 78.0 61
1982 Dan Quisenberry Kansas City Royals 2.57 9 7 35 136.2 46
1983 Dan Quisenberry Kansas City Royals 1.94 5 3 45 139.0 48
1984 Dan Quisenberry Kansas City Royals 2.64 6 3 44 129.1 41
1985 Dan Quisenberry Kansas City Royals 2.37 8 9 37 129.0 54
1986 Dave Righetti New York Yankees 2.45 8 8 46 106.2 83
1987 Dave Righetti New York Yankees 3.51 8 6 31 95.0 77
tie Jeff Reardon Minnesota Twins 4.48 8 8 31 80.1 83
1988 Dennis Eckersley Oakland Athletics 2.35 4 2 45 72.2 70
1989 Jeff Russell Texas Rangers 1.98 6 4 38 72.2 77
1990 Bobby Thigpen Chicago White Sox 1.83 4 6 57 88.2 70
1991 Dennis Eckersley Oakland Athletics 2.96 5 4 43 76.0 87
tie Bryan Harvey California Angels 1.60 2 4 46 78.2 101
1992 Dennis Eckersley Oakland Athletics 1.91 7 1 51 80.0 93
1993 Jeff Montgomery Kansas City Royals 2.27 7 5 45 87.1 66
1994 Lee Smith Baltimore Orioles 3.29 1 4 33 38.1 42
1995 Jose Mesa Cleveland Indians 1.13 3 0 46 64.0 58
1996 John Wetteland New York Yankees 2.83 2 3 43 63.2 69
1997 Mariano Rivera New York Yankees 1.88 6 4 43 71.2 68
1998 Tom Gordon Boston Red Sox 2.72 7 4 46 79.1 78
1999 Mariano Rivera New York Yankees 1.83 4 3 45 69.0 52
2000 Todd Jones Detroit Tigers 3.52 2 4 42 64.0 67
2001 Mariano Rivera New York Yankees 2.34 4 6 50 80.2 83
2002 Billy Koch Oakland Athletics 3.27 11 4 44 93.2 93
2003 Keith Foulke Oakland Athletics 2.08 9 1 43 86.2 88
2004 Mariano Rivera New York Yankees 1.94 4 2 53 78.2 66
2005 Joe Nathan Minnesota Twins 2.70 7 4 43 70 94
tie Mariano Rivera New York Yankees 1.38 7 4 43 78.1 80
2006 Francisco Rodriguez Los Angeles Angels 1.73 2 3 47 73 98
2007 Joe Borowski Cleveland Indians 5.07 4 5 45 65.2 58
2008 Francisco Rodriguez Los Angeles Angels 2.24 2 3 62 68.1 77
2009 Mariano Rivera New York Yankees 1.76 3 3 44 66.1 72
2010 Rafael Soriano Tampa Bay Rays 1.73 3 2 45 62.1 57

[edit] National League

Year Player Team ERA Wins Losses Saves Innings
Pitched
Strikeouts
1960 Lindy McDaniel St. Louis Cardinals 2.09 12 4 26 116.1 105
1961 Stu Miller San Francisco Giants 2.66 14 5 17 122.0 89
1962 Roy Face Pittsburgh Pirates 1.88 8 7 28 91.0 45
1963 Lindy McDaniel Chicago Cubs 2.86 13 7 22 88.0 75
1964 Al McBean Pittsburgh Pirates 1.91 8 3 22 89.2 41
1965 Ted Abernathy Chicago Cubs 2.57 4 6 31 136.1 104
1966 Phil Regan Los Angeles Dodgers 1.62 14 1 21 116.2 88
1967 Ted Abernathy Cincinnati Reds 1.27 6 3 28 106.1 88
1968 Phil Regan Los Angeles Dodgers/
Chicago Cubs
2.27 12 5 25 134.2 67
1969 Wayne Granger Cincinnati Reds 2.80 9 6 27 144.2 68
1970 Wayne Granger Cincinnati Reds 2.66 6 5 35 84.2 38
1971 Dave Giusti Pittsburgh Pirates 2.93 5 6 30 86.0 55
1972 Clay Carroll Cincinnati Reds 2.25 6 4 37 96.0 51
1973 Mike Marshall Montreal Expos 2.66 14 11 31 179.0 124
1974 Mike Marshall Los Angeles Dodgers 2.42 15 12 21 208.1 143
1975 Al Hrabosky St. Louis Cardinals 1.66 13 3 22 97.1 82
1976 Rawly Eastwick Cincinnati Reds 2.09 11 5 26 107.2 70
1977 Rollie Fingers San Diego Padres 2.99 8 9 35 132.1 113
1978 Rollie Fingers San Diego Padres 2.52 6 13 37 107.1 72
1979 Bruce Sutter Chicago Cubs 2.22 6 6 37 101.1 110
1980 Rollie Fingers San Diego Padres 2.80 11 9 23 103.0 69
tie Tom Hume Cincinnati Reds 2.56 9 10 25 137.0 68
1981 Bruce Sutter St. Louis Cardinals 2.62 3 5 25 82.1 57
1982 Bruce Sutter St. Louis Cardinals 2.90 9 8 36 102.1 61
1983 Al Holland Philadelphia Phillies 2.26 8 4 25 91.2 100
tie Lee Smith Chicago Cubs 1.65 4 10 29 103.1 91
1984 Bruce Sutter St. Louis Cardinals 1.54 5 7 45 122.2 77
1985 Jeff Reardon Montreal Expos 3.18 2 8 41 87.2 67
1986 Todd Worrell St. Louis Cardinals 2.08 9 10 36 103.2 73
1987 Steve Bedrosian Philadelphia Phillies 2.83 5 3 40 89.0 74
1988 John Franco Cincinnati Reds 1.57 6 6 39 86.0 46
1989 Mark Davis San Diego Padres 1.85 4 3 44 92.2 92
1990 John Franco New York Mets 2.53 5 3 33 67.2 56
1991 Lee Smith St. Louis Cardinals 2.34 6 3 47 73.0 67
1992 Doug Jones Houston Astros 1.85 11 8 36 111.2 93
tie Lee Smith St. Louis Cardinals 3.12 4 9 43 75.0 60
1993 Randy Myers Chicago Cubs 3.11 2 4 53 75.1 86
1994 John Franco New York Mets 2.70 1 4 30 50.0 42
1995 Randy Myers Chicago Cubs 3.88 1 2 38 55.2 59
1996 Trevor Hoffman San Diego Padres 2.25 9 5 42 88.0 111
1997 Jeff Shaw Cincinnati Reds 2.38 4 2 42 94.2 74
1998 Trevor Hoffman San Diego Padres 1.48 4 2 53 73.0 86
1999 Ugueth Urbina Montreal Expos 3.69 6 6 41 75.2 100
2000 Antonio Alfonseca Florida Marlins 4.24 5 6 45 70.0 47
2001 Armando Benitez New York Mets 3.77 6 4 43 76.1 93
tie Robb Nen San Francisco Giants 3.01 4 5 45 77.2 93
2002 John Smoltz Atlanta Braves 3.25 3 2 55 80.1 85
2003 Eric Gagné Los Angeles Dodgers 1.20 2 3 55 82.1 137
2004 Eric Gagné Los Angeles Dodgers 2.19 7 3 45 82.1 114
2005 Chad Cordero Washington Nationals 1.82 2 4 47 74.1 61
2006 Trevor Hoffman San Diego Padres 2.14 0 2 46 63 50
2007 Jose Valverde Arizona Diamondbacks 2.66 1 4 47 64.1 78
2008 Brad Lidge Philadelphia Phillies 1.95 2 0 41 69.1 92
2009 Ryan Franklin St. Louis Cardinals 1.92 4 3 38 61 44
2010 Heath Bell San Diego Padres 1.93 6 1 47 70 86

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