Earlier this week, former Blue Jays right-hander Dave Stieb was inducted into the San Jose Sports Hall of Fame at a ceremony held at the SAP Center on November 8th, honouring athletes who either played or hailed from the San Jose area and excelled at the highest level in their chosen sport(s). The original announcement came back in September, with Stieb entering the Hall of Fame alongside Patrick Marleau (hockey), Lorrie Fair (soccer), and Chris Wondolowski (soccer).
Born in Santa Ana, Stieb was primarily an outfielder during his time at Oak Grove High School and at San Jose City College and didn’t appear on the mound until he took his talents to Southern Illinois University. Once drafted by the Jays during the fifth round of the 1978 draft, Stieb became a full-time pitcher, as the Blue Jays staff noted that his quickest route to the big leagues would be on the mound. After the position change prior to the 1979 season, the power pitcher skyrocketed through the farm system and made his big league debut later that year.
The right-hander was one of the most dominant arms in the 1980s, continuously finding himself in the Cy Young conversation while making seven all-star appearances. Through parts of 15 seasons with Toronto, Stieb posted a 3.42 ERA through 2873 innings of work, starting 408 games while appearing in 439 total. He led the Major Leagues in complete games (19) in 1982 while also leading the American League in ERA in 1985 while continuously pitching above 200+ innings, doing so on nine different occasions.
Former Blue Jays right-hander enters the San Jose Sports Hall of Fame
He won a World Series with the 1992 club in the twilight of his career (although injuries kept him out of the postseason) before making four starts for the Chicago White Sox in 1993, retiring shortly after due to back injuries. The Southern Illinois product did not appear on a big-league mound for four seasons before getting another opportunity to pitch in 1998 for the Jays again (on the heels of a coaching opportunity), making 19 appearances on the season before officially hanging up his cleats.
A workhorse on the mound, Stieb holds numerous franchise records, including innings pitched, bWAR for pitchers (56.9), wins (175), strikeouts (1658), complete games (103), and shutouts (30). He was inducted into the Level of Excellence on April 9th, 1996 alongside George Bell in the inaugural class and is regarded as one of the top pitchers in Blue Jays history, including the club’s only no-hitter since the Jays expanded into a team back in 1977.
BUD GERACIE: When San Jose’s aces ruled the big leagues … Dave Stieb set to join Mark Langston, Dave Righetti in San Jose Sports Hall of Fame #ExcellentRead @BlueJays @Mariners @Yankees @SanJoseSportsHofhttps://t.co/nfEp8lAunl
— bob elliott (@elliottbaseball) November 9, 2023
Speaking on the honour, Stieb said, “You never think what you’re achieving at that time is going to become something like this. So, like I said, it’s flattering and quite an honor and a surprise.”
Stieb joins former big leaguers Mark Langston, Carney Lansford, and Ken Caminiti in the 28th class and will forever see his name fly in both Toronto and San Jose for his accomplishments on the baseball diamond.
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