Bret Saberhagen took the baseball world by storm in 1985. In just his second year as a major league pitcher, Saberhagen compiled a 20-6 record with 10 complete games, 158 strikeouts, and a 2.87 ERA. These numbers earned Bret his first Cy Young Award. In addition to that, he also led the Kansas City Royals to the World Series in which he won 2 games for them including a shutout in game 7 to clinch the title. Saberhagen was awarded the World Series MVP that year for his outstanding performance in the fall classic.
Just 4 years later, Saberhagen was at it again and quickly solidified his status as one of the game’s best pitchers. Bret won the Cy Young Award again in 1989 while finishing the season with a 23-6 record. He also averaged a career low ERA of just 2.16 for the season.
Amazingly enough in his 2 best years, each of which ended as the Cy Young Award winner, Saberhagen was not voted to the All-Star team in either of these years. After his first 6 seasons, he compiled a 92-61 record but only made 1 trip to the All-Star game. It’s very surprising that with such dominant performances and some incredible World Series moments, that Bret Saberhagen’s star was not the brightest of them all. Granted, he played in Kansas City, but his skills and stats should have elevated his status to one of baseball’s best during the 1980’s.
Bret Saberhagen ended his 16-year career with a 167-117 record. Who knows how many more wins he would have compiled if he had played on better teams during his playing days. Although his annual stats cannot compare to other breakthrough stars from the 1980’s like Roger Clemens and Dwight Gooden, Bret’s best years can. And then you add the fact that he carried the Royals to the World Series Championship in 1985 and you’ve got a great legend to share….
Today, Bret runs the Bret Saberhagen Make A Difference Foundation. You can click this link to check out the great charity work that he is involved with.