Jack Russell Spring (born March 11, 1933 in Spokane, Washington) is an American former Major League Baseball relief pitcher. The 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m), 175 lb (79 kg) left-hander played for the Philadelphia Phillies (1955), Boston Red Sox (1957), Washington Senators (1958), Los Angeles Angels (1961–64), Chicago Cubs (1964), St. Louis Cardinals (1964), and Cleveland Indians (1965).
Spring attended both Gonzaga University in 1951 and Washington State University in 1952. At these schools, he played college baseball for the Bulldogs and Cougars, respectively.
Spring pitched in a total of six major league games for three clubs before being acquired by the expansion Los Angeles Angels in 1961. He started four games for L.A. and won three of them in September, then pitched exclusively in relief beginning in 1962. That season, his 57 appearances ranked third in the American League. He, along with Art Fowler, Tom Morgan, and later Julio Navarro, were the Angels' most reliable pitchers out of the bullpen during their second and third seasons. Spring's combined record for 1962 and 1963 was 7-2 with 8 saves and a 3.66 ERA in 102 games. He was traded by the Angels on May 15, 1964 and pitched for three more clubs before making his last major league appearance on August 31, 1965.
Spring was interviewed for the 2014 book "Portrait of a Franchise: An Intimate Look at Cleveland Indians Baseball During the Rockin' Sixties" by Doug Kurkul. In the book, he shares his thoughts about Indians Manager Birdie Tebbetts, and his falling short of achieving enough major league service time to qualify for a pension.
Career totals include a 12–5 record in 155 games pitched, 5 games started, 51 games finished, 8 saves, and an ERA of 4.26. He was part of one of the most famous trades in MLB history, when on June 15, 1964, he accompanied Lou Brock in moving from the Cubs to the Cardinals in the Brock for Broglio deal; Brock led the Cardinals to the 1964 pennant and World Series championship, but Spring appeared in only four games for the Cardinals before being sent to the minor leagues.
Spring once went 19 consecutive outings without recording a strikeout, which is the longest such streak since 1957.
He was inducted into the Inland Northwest Sports Hall of Fame in 2005 alongside former Utah Jazz basketball player John Stockton at a ceremony in Spokane, WA.
- ^ "Gonzaga University Baseball Players Who Made It to the Major Leagues". Baseball-Almanac.com. Archived from the original on 2012-08-10. Retrieved 10 August 2012.
- ^ "Washington State University Baseball Players Who Made It to the Major Leagues". Baseball-Almanac.com. Archived from the original on 16 December 2012. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
By Dean Hanley
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