As his curveball goes, so goes Mike Stanton. The Yankee setup man could always depend on his low 90s fastball, but when he rediscovered the ability to throw his big breaking curveball for strikes during the 1999 World Series, he returned a powerful weapon to his arsenal. When Jeff Nelson, Stanton's right-handed bullpen-mate, departed for the Mariners after the 2000 season, the Yankees felt Stanton could fill the void.
A journeyman reliever doesn't usually carry around a lot of records, but Stanton does hold one: the record for most relief appearances (552) without ever making a major league start. The big day was May 9, 1999, against the Seattle Mariners. When starter Ramiro Mendoza became ill, interim manager Don Zimmer called on Stanton to take the mound. The Texas lefty did himself proud, allowing no runs in four innings of work, for a perfect 0.00 ERA lifetime as a starter. (EPW)
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