5. Jimmy Key – 1993
I have always felt that Jimmy Key is the most underrated and underappreciated player in team history. The franchise selected him in the third round of the 1982 Amateur Draft and less than two years later he made his Major League debut. Key would become an All-Star in his second season, be the runner-up for the Cy Young in 1987 in a season he led the league in ERA and WHIP; and go eight consecutive seasons of double-digit wins.
Key was not overwhelmed by the playoffs and he sits tied for third-most wins in franchise history with three, which included two in the 1992 World Series, one being the clinching game. During that 1992 postseason run, Key pitched in three games total, posting a 0.75 ERA. After the World Series celebrations, Key would leave in free agency and sign on with the New York Yankees.
The left-hander led the Yankees into Toronto in late June of 1993 with his team trailing the Blue Jays by two games in the standings and he was determined to close the gap in the AL East. Key had a tough start, surrendering a pair of runs in the second and then another on a Joe Carter solo home run in the third that put the Yankees down 3-0.
However, Key would surrender just one more hit after the Carter blast over the next 3+ innings while the Yankees chipped away to take the lead. Key would strike out six batters, including four out of the five famous members of W.A.M.C.O. line-up and collect his ninth win of the season.
Pitching Line: 6IP | 5H | 3R | 3ER | 3BB | 6K | 1HR