One of the heroes of the Cleveland Indians’ run to the seventh game of the 1997 World Series, Jaret Wright, is born in Anaheim, California.
A first round pick by the Tribe in the 1994 June amateur draft, the son of former Major League pitcher Clyde Wright broke into the Majors on June 24, 1997, and appeared in 16 games during the regular season, going 8-3 with a 4.38 ERA before earning three wins in the 1997 playoffs.
He won 12 games the next season for the Indians, but injuries slowed his career to a halt as he made 26 starts in 1999 and just 24 total appearances (22 starts) over the next three years. He signed with the San Diego Padres as a free agent after the 2002 season and was converted into a reliever for the 2003 season, spending time in both southern California and later with the Atlanta Braves after he was selected off of waivers in late August.
That move paid off well for both Wright and the Braves as the right-hander worked four outings in the National League Divisional Series. Still just 28 years old, he was inserted into their rotation in 2004 and helped lead the club back to the playoffs with a career year on the mound, but lost both of his starts to the eventual NL pennant winning Houston Astros in the NLDS.
He parlayed that season into a three-year, $21 million contract with the New York Yankees, but injuries again limited him. He made 13 starts in 2005, going 5-5 with a 6.08 ERA, and 30 appearances (27 starts) in 2006 while posting an 11-7 record. That offseason, he was dealt to Baltimore, where he concluded his Major League career with three losses in three starts for the Orioles in 2007.
Also on this date in Tribe history:
1974 – Wright’s future teammate, first baseman/designated hitter Richie Sexson is born in Portland, Oregon.