A relief pitcher with a unorthodox sidearm delivery, Eichhorn was the AL Rookie Pitcher of the Year in 1986. He refused the opportunity to pitch five meaningless extra innings at the end of the season to win an AL ERA title that instead went to Roger Clemens. But Eichhorn's 1.72 ERA set a Blue Jays rookie record, as did his totals for games, wins, saves, strikeouts and hit batters.
In 1987 Eichhorn tied the AL record for appearances (89), being used mainly as a set-up man for fireballer Tom Henke. But his effectiveness declined as he attempted to change his delivery so he wouldn't be so easy to steal on and as righthanded batters learned to lay off his wicked breaking ball. (TF)
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FROM THE BASEBALL CHRONOLOGY
»April 21, 1991:
After losing his 1st two starts when the Twins were shut out, Scott Erickson is victorious, 4–3, at California. He allows five hits and benefits from an tie-breaking unearned run off reliever Mark Eichhorn. It is the start of a 12-game win streak for Erickson, who will go 20–8 on the year.