4. Steve Kline’s 89 games in a season
Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Last year, Kevin Siegrist (above) came close to eclipsing the filthy-hatted Steve Kline’s 89 appearances in 2001, and what happened to Siegrist? The lefthander, who appeared in a Major-League-leading 81 regular-season games for the St. Louis Cardinals last year, gutted his way through the postseason. He had nothing left to be as effective and reliable as he was the rest of the year.
Mike Matheny will almost certainly think twice when he notices the workload of his bullpen skewing heavily to one or two relievers in 2016. Which means the St. Louis Cardinals will probably never have another reliever like Kline.
What makes the lefty’s 2001 season so amazing is it followed two consecutive seasons of 80+ appearances for the Montreal Expos. Among active players, Atlanta Braves righty Peter Moylan leads the pack with an 87-game season in 2009. But as we know more about player health, the less managers and trainers rely on what players tell them. And players lie all the time about how they feel. Being a “gamer” like Kline has never been tougher.