Colorado Rockies History: Bruce Ruffin or Jason Hammel at Pitcher?

Sep 19, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jason Hammel (39) delivers a pitch during the first inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Caylor Arnold-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 19, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jason Hammel (39) delivers a pitch during the first inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Caylor Arnold-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Colorado Rockies throw baseballs
Mar 5, 2015; Jupiter, FL, USA; A general view of baseballs on the field at Roger Dean Stadium prior to a game between the St. Louis Cardinals and Miami Marlins. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports /

Our pick: Bruce Ruffin

If the name Bruce Ruffin rings a bell, it’s because he tied a Major League record as Ruffin is the only Rockies player ever to strike out four batters in one inning. One of those strikeouts happened to be Sammy Sosa. You might also recognize Ruffin’s name because he is fourth on the Rockies career saves list, two saves ahead of a guy named Rafael Betancourt. The fact that Ruffin is a Rockies leader in saves is a bit surprising considering he came into the league as a starter with the Phillies. Ruffin started a total of 152 games over a 12-year career.

Ruffin helped break in the club in Colorado’s inaugural 1993 season. For that reason, Ruffin finds himself as the best Rockies southpaw of the 1990s. In that inaugural season, Ruffin did start 12 games for the club but was then used strictly as a reliever until his retirement from baseball in 1997. Over five years in Colorado, Ruffin was one of the more stable and consistent bullpen arms to come through Blake Street.

In total, Ruffin played in 246 games for the Rockies, posted a hearty 3.84 ERA and saved 60 ball games for the club. Before landing in Colorado, Ruffin played college baseball at the University of Texas, where he won a national championship. He then came up with the Phillies to start off the post-Steve Carlton era, earning an Opening Day start for the Phillies in 1990. All together, Ruffin put together a solid resume and found success in the Rockies pen.

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