Randy Myers made his MLB debut just in time to enjoy some fun with the New York Mets. He participated in only one game in 1985, saw action in 10.2 innings in 1986, and finally managed to get his rookie year out of the way in 1987. It was in that rookie season when he would record his first MLB save: a 3-inning effort against the Atlanta Braves on July 7th.
In 1988, he got his first regular stint as the team’s closer. Pitching to a 1.72 ERA, Myers also managed to save 26 games for the Mets. He followed it up with another impressive season in 1989, posting a 2.35 ERA and 24 more saves.
Myers’ time with the Mets was short-lived. He was traded the next offseason to the Cincinnati Reds in the John Franco move. For about the next decade, he would develop into one of the game’s best yet forgotten closers.
Originally a member of the Mets organization, Randy Myers was one of the most successful closers of the 1990s
The 1990s was when the closer role became much more like the way we see it today. The 1980s still had guys like Jesse Orosco on the Mets going multiple innings for their saves on a regular basis. Things started to change drastically in the 1990s with single relief pitchers asked to, more often than not, only get three outs for their club.
Myers would make the first of four All-Star teams in 1990 with the Reds. Proving his worth, he saved 31 games for them with a 2.08 ERA. He was so effective that he finished fifth in the Cy Young race. In the playoffs, Myers gave the Reds 8.2 shutout innings. He was even awarded the 1990 NLCS MVP Award prior to the Reds winning it all one series later.
Mets fans already knew how clutch Myers could be in the postseason. Back in 1988, his first trip to the playoffs, Myers threw 4.2 shutout innings in three different appearances. He even came away with two wins against the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NLCS.
Not nearly done yet, Myers would eventually land with the Chicago Cubs in 1993. This was a season where he managed to save 53 games. At the time, it was a National League record and the second most a pitcher ever had in a single season. Even today it’s tied for the sixth-most in any one season.
Myers would go on to lead the league in saves two more times after 1993. He did so in 1995 with the Cubs again (38 saves) and with the Baltimore Orioles in 1997 (45 saves). His 1997 campaign was a brilliant one that also included a career-best 1.51 ERA. For his efforts, Myers was a fourth-place finisher in both the Cy Young and MVP.
Tallying all of the saves up, Myers would hang up his cleats with 347. Only 13 players have saved more in their careers.
Myers helped pave the way for the next batch of closers. It all began as a member of the Mets.