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BCubb2003
05-23-2012, 08:18 AM
I'm curious about relievers before the modern bullpen, in the days when men were men and starting pitchers were expected to go the distance. How were they used? And how often? What did a starting pitcher have to do to get taken out of the game? Were the relievers basically 5th or 6th starters waiting for their chance to start if someone got hurt? Did anyone make a name for himself as a reliever despite the culture of the time? Any of the historians here have any ideas?

redsmetz
05-23-2012, 08:48 AM
I'm not a student of this, but I've explored it periodically. It seems that starters were perfectly capable of doing some relieving, not sure what the circumstances were. I have looked at the 1961 Reds squad and it shows some interesting things.

First, as you noted, that club had 46 complete games, with our top 3 starters (O'Toole, Jay & Purkey) having 38 of those. And yet, O'Toole and Purkey both relieved a handful of games with O'Toole actually being credited with two saves (although I don't think that was considered a stat then - someone can correct me if I'm mistaken about that). Jim Maloney seemed to have bounced back and forth, starting only 11 of his 27 games that year. At the same time, the club had two pitchers who look more like current bullpen relievers - Jim Brosnan and Bill Henry, both of whom relieved exclusively and did well at the job; they each had 16 saves and they finished 66 of that year's games (just over 60% of the games which were Complete Games).

The 1940 club is a little different. First, they had 91 complete games pitched with almost all of them coming from the top 5 pitchers (and my guess is they used a 4 man rotation back then, but I'm not sure about that). Walters and Derringer only started and had 55 complete games between (they pitched more than 600 innings that year - whew!). Vander Meer must have been hurt because he only pitched 48 innings and he had 2 complete games in his 10 games (7 starts). All in all, nine pitchers started games and only three pitchers were exclusively relievers.

Others are much better versed in the history of this development, but I think these are two interesting snapshots of the Reds.

When do you consider the "modern" reliever era as starting?

BCubb2003
05-23-2012, 09:24 AM
I guess there might be at least three eras, as you point out. I think the modern bullpen began with Captain Hook. Before that, the development of relief-only guys like Brosnan, as you say. I'm especially interested in the years like the 40s and before. If your team has 90 complete games, what do you have to do to get taken out, and what kind of life is that for a reliever?

traderumor
05-23-2012, 09:26 AM
Up through the 50s, the relievers were failed starters for the most part, and generally were only called upon when the starter failed. It was a true "needs relief help" mentality. You did have some solid relievers starting to spring up in the 50s, like the Yankees had Johnny Sain, the Dodgers had Jim Hughes, but they seemed to be luxuries rather than necessities. These were 2-3 inning lock down guys. I'm not sure that "have a good bullpen" was even in the analysis of the day.

In the 60s, you started to see the evolution of the specialist. Dick Radatz with the Red Sox would be a good example, who was used more in the "fireman" way that became prevalent in the 70s. Hoyt Wilhelm crosses the 50s and 60s and a smidge in the 70s. Relievers then were still expected to go multiple innings unless effectiveness dictated otherwise. I don't think matchups was too big a part of usage at this stage. It was more the infancy of the "relief ace" age. Some teams had two guys they leaned on. The relief ace would pitch what we would consider an enormous amount of innings today, logging in excess of 100 innings was not uncommon.

In the 70s is when the foundation was laid for modern bullpen usage. Most managers were still using the "relief ace" method. Then along came Sparky, known as Captain Hook for his ways of lifting starters at the first hint of trouble and calling on the bullpen, putting together a stable of relievers that could get the job done. Still though, he would lean heavily on two guys. For example, 1969-71, it was Wayne Granger and Clay Carroll, then it went to Caroll and Borbon, then by 75-76, Eastwick and McEnaney arrived to complement Borbon while Carroll was moved to the White Sox.

The relief ace hung around through the 80s, like Bruce Sutter, Lee Smith, John Franco, Tom Hume, etc. Still, late inning guys were used in multiple innings.

Then the Reds come on the scene again with the Nasty Boys, which is a good turning point toward modern bullpen usage. Many teams were starting to use specialists, but there was still also a lot of "relief ace" usage going on as well. The Nasty Boys really pointed out how 3-4 top notch arms in the pen can turn a game into "get to the 7th with the lead and the game is over" mentality.

traderumor
05-23-2012, 09:30 AM
I guess there might be at least three eras, as you point out. I think the modern bullpen began with Captain Hook. Before that, the development of relief-only guys like Brosnan, as you say. I'm especially interested in the years like the 40s and before. If your team has 90 complete games, what do you have to do to get taken out, and what kind of life is that for a reliever?Strictly ineffectiveness. I've dabbled with the 1930 season in Strat-o-Matic and it is really difficult to leave the starter in when he's getting shelled, but the starter was expected to go the distance every time he took the mound. I don't think it was strategy that led to going to the pen, but purely was based on ineffectiveness.

redsmetz
05-23-2012, 09:38 AM
Hoyt Wilhelm is such an interesting example.

First his minor league career (interrupted by 3 years of service):

http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=wilhel002jam#standard_pitching::none

Early he was relieving a lot, but he's used primarily as a starter his last two years in AAA for the Giants.

Then when he begins his major league career at age 29 and he leads the league in appearances and has no starts in his first six seasons. Then in 1958 he seems to be a spot starter. The next year, he starts 27 games, then it falls off and he's back to being a full-time reliever. He pitches for a total of 21 years, retiring at age 49.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/w/wilheho01.shtml

And it's a HOF career ultimately.

redsmetz
05-23-2012, 09:45 AM
Here's an interesting history (which I haven't finished completely):

http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=2627

westofyou
05-23-2012, 09:45 AM
Strictly ineffectiveness. I've dabbled with the 1930 season in Strat-o-Matic and it is really difficult to leave the starter in when he's getting shelled, but the starter was expected to go the distance every time he took the mound. I don't think it was strategy that led to going to the pen, but purely was based on ineffectiveness.

Sounds like you need to draft Firbo Marbury

Any discussion of the bullpen beginnings need to reference the Senators and Marbury

http://m.bbref.com/m?p=XXplayersXXmXXmarbefi01.shtml

He essentially is the first relief specialist

Post WW 2 there was a odd time when walks were super plentiful compared to past history, it's during this era that Page and others became known as "Fireman" guys who put out the incoming flames of a rally. That name itself implies that they come in after trouble has started, a couple decades later the same role would be used in hope of stopping the trouble before it started

The role then was multi inning as opposed to the single batter roles introduced by LaRussa and his peers

Personally I like the sixties/seventies reliever roles the best, multi inning guys enable you to have a deeper bench

But in reality they existed because starters ate more innings and thus limited the need to pitch on consecutive days

westofyou
05-23-2012, 09:47 AM
Hoyt Wilhelm is such an interesting example.

First his minor league career (interrupted by 3 years of service):

http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=wilhel002jam#standard_pitching::none

Early he was relieving a lot, but he's used primarily as a starter his last two years in AAA for the Giants.

Then when he begins his major league career at age 29 and he leads the league in appearances and has no starts in his first six seasons. Then in 1958 he seems to be a spot starter. The next year, he starts 27 games, then it falls off and he's back to being a full-time reliever. He pitches for a total of 21 years, retiring at age 49.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/w/wilheho01.shtml

And it's a HOF career ultimately.

And he hit an HR in his 1st MLB and that was his only one

BCubb2003
05-23-2012, 09:50 AM
It sounds like the earliest relievers were mop-up guys. The starter gets rocked and it looks like the game will never end if he stays in, so somebody comes in take the rest of the game.

traderumor
05-23-2012, 09:58 AM
Sounds like you need to draft Firbo Marbury

Any discussion of the bullpen beginnings need to reference the Senators and Marbury

http://m.bbref.com/m?p=XXplayersXXmXXmarbefi01.shtml

He essentially is the first relief specialist

Post WW 2 there was a odd time when walks were super plentiful compared to past history, it's during this era that Page and others became known as "Fireman" guys who put out the incoming flames of a rally. That name itself implies that they come in after trouble has started, a couple decades later the same role would be used in hope of stopping the trouble before it started

The role then was multi inning as opposed to the single batter roles introduced by LaRussa and his peers

Personally I like the sixties/seventies reliever roles the best, multi inning guys enable you to have a deeper bench

But in reality they existed because starters ate more innings and thus limited the need to pitch on consecutive daysThat's the rub. You see a lot of bullpen theories flying around here, but they seldom consider how frequently starters can't get past the 5th or 6th inning in the pitch count era.

RedsBaron
05-23-2012, 10:22 AM
The Yankees use of Joe Page in the late 1940s had an effect on how teams used their bullpen. Page was a bullpen specialist and became celebrated for his great work, leading the AL in saves in both 1947 and 1949, and finishing 4th and 3rd in MVP voting in those seasons, both World Championship years for the Bronx Bombers. Partially in response to Page's success, the Red Sox took Ellis Kinder, who had gone 23-6 with 19 complete games (and 4 saves) and a 130 ERA+ in 1949, making Kinder a relief pitcher. In that role Kinder was also effective, saving 27 games with a 10-6 record and a 1.85 ERA, 225 ERA+ in 1953.
Despite that, as the above article noted, Casey Stengel used pretty much the whole staff as his bullpen during the 1950s.

Kc61
05-23-2012, 10:24 AM
In 1961 when the Reds and Yankees played in the World Series, each team had one or two primary relievers.

Luis Arroyo had 65 appearances for NY in relief. He didn't just throw one inning. He had 119 innings.

Jim Coates had 32 relief appearances and the others were in the twenty plus appearance range. Coates also started some games.

For the Reds, Jim Brosnan had 53 appearances for 80 innings. Bill Henry had 47 appearances, 53 innings. Everybody else was in the 20 appearance range.

So in the early 1960s teams did have important relievers but there were very few of them and they threw multiple innings. Most of the bullpenners didn't work that much. And the starters were used in relief on occasion, much more often than today. Only Whitey Ford and Joey Jay on these two squads started all their outings -- the other starters also relieved.

Today, of course, with starters not working complete games, teams each have many relievers working lots of games, many of whom only work one inning at a time. Very different.

cumberlandreds
05-23-2012, 10:31 AM
Roy Face was another reliever of the 50's and early 60's Pirates. He won 18 games, all in relief, in 1959.
I think Joe Black was another exclusive reliever of the 1950's Dodger teams.

westofyou
05-23-2012, 10:31 AM
Also the rosters of the early years were not set at 25, that's a modern era luxury.

Thus less specialists

HokieRed
05-23-2012, 11:01 AM
Among the relief specialists of an earlier era was Hersh Freeman, who played a very important role on the Reds' very good 3rd place team of 1956, one that finished two games out IIRC. Freeman went 14-5, made 64 appearances, finished 47 games, threw 108.2 innings, had 18 saves, 3.40 ERA. It was the case, as I remember it, that most of the 50's guys were either young pitchers not quite trusted enough yet to start or, more frequently, older starters who now would pitch mostly out of the pen and start a game occasionally. One reason I think you see guys who split roles between starting and relieving is that lots of teams used 4 man rotations and then had "spot starters," so some guys might make most of their appearances as relievers but would start when the schedule demanded it--and since there were a lot more rainouts and regular double headers, you needed those spot guys a whole lot more than you would today. But some few guys like Freeman did even come to the league as relievers. Freeman, for instance, made 204 lifetime appearances, only 3 as a starter.

George Anderson
05-23-2012, 11:07 AM
Just makes you wonder if the game utilized relievers in the 1920's and 30's like they do today just why Babe Ruth could not have also been a relief specialist. I can't think of any good reason he couldn't of pitched the 9th inning a couple times a week and still be the monster at the plate he was.

RedsBaron
05-23-2012, 12:15 PM
The first Reds reliever whom I have vivid personal memories of is Ted Abernathy. "Dear Abby" had a terrific 1967 season with the Reds, going 6-3 with a 1.27 ERA, 299 ERA+, and 28 saves. As for how he was used, "Dear Abby" appeared in 70 games, none as a starter, finished 61, and threw 106.1 innings. He clearly was not "saved" to be brought in solely in the ninth inning.
In 1968 Abernathy went 10-7 with 13 saves, a 2.46 ERA and 129 ERA+. He appeared in 78 games, none as a starter, finished 53...and pitched 135.1 relief innings.
He was even more heavily used in 1965 when he was with the Cubs. He again started zero games, but appeared in 84 games, finished 62, and saved 31, to go with a 4-6 record, a 2.57 ERA and 143 ERA+; he pitched 136.1 relief innings.

westofyou
05-23-2012, 12:29 PM
The first Reds reliever whom I have have vivid personal memories of is Ted Abernathy. "Dear Abby" had a terrific 1967 season with the Reds, going 6-3 with a 1.27 ERA, 299 ERA+, and 28 saves. As for how he was used, "Dear Abby" appeared in 70 games, none as a starter, finished 61, and threw 106.1 innings. He clearly was not "saved" to be brought in solely in the ninth inning.
In 1968 Abernathy went 10-7 with 13 saves, a 2.46 ERA and 129 ERA+. He appeared in 78 games, none as a starter, finished 53...and pitched 135.1 relief innings.
He was even more heavily used in 1965 when he was with the Cubs. He again started zero games, but appeared in 84 games, finished 62, and saved 31, to go with a 4-6 record, a 2.57 ERA and 143 ERA+; he pitched 136.1 relief innings.

IIRC Abernathy is the only Reds reliever to lead the team in Win Shares. He also is one of the many fine LH guys they have had in a major role, they seem to have had a plethora of them prior to the lost decade

Kc61
05-23-2012, 12:37 PM
IIRC Abernathy is the only Reds reliever to lead the team in Win Shares. He also is one of the many fine LH guys they have had in a major role, they seem to have had a plethora of them prior to the lost decade

Abernathy was an extreme side-armer, actually he began his windup almost touching the ground. He pitched for 14 years in the bigs and I remember him being very effective for the Reds. He was right handed, though.

One of my earliest Reds favorites was another reliever, Billy McCool. He was a lefty who was heavily used in the mid-1960s. McCool struck out 120 guys in 105 innings in 1965, when he had 21 saves.

westofyou
05-23-2012, 12:46 PM
My bad, Ted was a submariner, like Sully

McCool was tried as a starter too

Spitball
05-23-2012, 12:52 PM
I believe Abernathy was actually a submariner.

The Reds' Clay Carroll in the 1970s would frequently pitch 50 to 70 games in relief and start 4 or 5 games.

Dodger Mike Marshall pitched in 106 games and 208 innings all in relief in 1974.

Dick Radatz had 181 strikeouts in relief in 1964.

RedlegJake
05-23-2012, 01:05 PM
In early years it was not at all unusual for the team's ace to finish up a game that another starter on the team couldn't finish. Lefty Grove was called on that way quite often. So was Christy Mathewson.

The exclusive reliever was unheard of - as a career specialist anyway, probably as WOY alludes, because the rosters were much smaller.

After WWII most teams had at least one such guy, though. Joe Page, Joe Black, Hersh Freeman (the Reds relief specialist of the 50s), Hoyt WIlhelm, Elroy Face were some of them. Even these guys made an occasional start though and all of them pitched multiple innings.

If your starter faltered and you pulled him in the 5th, the reliever was expected to finish the game unless the manager used a pinch hitter in the late innings. Even then the PH was reserved for the 8th or 9th inning, almost never before that. At the same time as the relief specialist emerged, so did the pinch hitting specialist. With no DH to hide "good hit no field" guys, players like Smoky Burgess and Jerry Lynch found a spot on the roster by being able to hit exclusively one time a game in the late innings. These guys were usually butchers in the field but by learning to come in and hit "cold" and the emergence of relievers another niche type of player was established.

Pinch hitters became more commonly used and multiple relievers in a single game more common in the late 50s and the sixties but the "closer" and "set-up" man and long specialist didn't arrive on the scene until the 70s when their roles began to develop.

Even then it wasn't an immediate development but occurred over the next couple decades. Captain Hook, Anderson, didn't use one guy exclusively, he used multiple relievers. One reason the BRM was so successful with a relatively mediocre starting corps was a deep and frequently used BP.

Borbon, Carroll, Granger, Eastwick, McEnaney, Hall, Baney, Kirby, Darcy - all these guys had multiple years together in the Reds pen in the 70s. Borbon and Carroll were the main arms but Granger, Eastwick, McEnaney and Hall all had more than 50 appearances at least once, and all had starts too, and were used for multiple innings.

Sparky had no "closer". Today he'd be condemned for using "closer by committee" and running all his guys out there for multiple innings. Sparky used his relievers as the situation demanded, not by a rote formula.

The middle man -setup man-closer roles strictly defined as we see today emerged in the late eighties and early nineties. I think the closer role emerged first, then the setup man, and lefty specialist.

Another thing that has changed is the number of pitchers a team carries. In the sixties a team ony carried ten pitchers during the season most of the time and 15 position players. 10 pitchers, 3 catchers, 5 outfielders, 7 infielders. Almost every team was setup that way to start the year. Now we see teams carrying 12 or 13 pitchers and only 12 or 13 position players. As the starters innings have diminished the number of relievers needed increased forcing a rearrangement of the rosters.

_Sir_Charles_
05-23-2012, 01:10 PM
One of the more interesting threads in quite a while. Educational too. I was brought up right during the rise of the machine, so I never really saw the pre-Sparky relievers.

Keep it coming guys. Good stuff.

BCubb2003
05-23-2012, 02:00 PM
Roy Face was another reliever of the 50's and early 60's Pirates. He won 18 games, all in relief, in 1959.
I think Joe Black was another exclusive reliever of the 1950's Dodger teams.

Can you imagine a reliever winning 18 games? He must have come in early a lot, and pitched quite a few innings at a time.

westofyou
05-23-2012, 02:06 PM
Can you imagine a reliever winning 18 games? He must have come in early a lot, and pitched quite a few innings at a time.

Seven stints of three, one if four, one of five

Only 91 IP that year

An extremely lucky year

cumberlandreds
05-23-2012, 02:09 PM
Can you imagine a reliever winning 18 games? He must have come in early a lot, and pitched quite a few innings at a time.

Here's Face's pitching log for 1959. He had a lot of 2 and 3 inning games. One four inning game was his longest outing near the end against the Reds. You would have to click on each boxscore to see when he entered the game. I would say he the original "vulture" win reliever. :D
His lone loss wasn't until September 11th. He was 17-0 at that point. What a season!

http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1959/Kfacer1010061959.htm (http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1959/Kfacer1010061959.htm)

camisadelgolf
05-23-2012, 02:09 PM
This thread is a classic case of why I love RedsZone. Good job, y'all!

redsmetz
05-23-2012, 02:15 PM
Here's Face's pitching log for 1959. He had a lot of 2 and 3 inning games. One four inning game was his longest outing near the end against the Reds. You would have to click on each boxscore to see when he entered the game. I would say he the original "vulture" win reliever. :D
His lone loss wasn't until September 11th. He was 17-0 at that point. What a season!

http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1959/Kfacer1010061959.htm (http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1959/Kfacer1010061959.htm)

Baseball-reference.com does a better job on their game log - shows exactly where they came in the game.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/gl.cgi?id=facero01&t=p&year=1959

I noticed that outing against the Reds was an extra inning affair. He came in in the 9th inning and it went 12 innings.

cumberlandreds
05-23-2012, 02:22 PM
Baseball-reference.com does a better job on their game log - shows exactly where they came in the game.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/gl.cgi?id=facero01&t=p&year=1959 (http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/gl.cgi?id=facero01&t=p&year=1959)

I noticed that outing against the Reds was an extra inning affair. He came in in the 9th inning and it went 12 innings.

Thanks. That is better. :thumbup: Looks like he came in a lot in the 7th and 8th innings. Also had 30 multiple inning games. Amazing season. Also had 9 saves to go with 18 wins.

Kc61
05-23-2012, 03:04 PM
Sparky had no "closer". Today he'd be condemned for using "closer by committee" and running all his guys out there for multiple innings. Sparky used his relievers as the situation demanded, not by a rote formula.

.

I agree and disagree. Sparky had no set closer, but in those World Series years of 1975 and 76 his main man for the ninth inning was Rawley Eastwick. It's too bad that Eastwick allowed a big homer in the 1975 Series to Carbo, for which he is remembered, but he was a shut down closer who led the NL in saves in 1975 and 1976. I always was confident when Rawly came into the game.

Borbon finished a lot of games too, but the lefty closer then was Will McEnaney. Think Sean Marshall. Lefty curve baller who could be very effective, very tough on lefties.

I love watching bullpens. It upsets me sometimes when posters suggest that anybody can relieve, they are fungible, of limited importance. I think a good team can become great with shut down relievers.

One relief pitcher thing I remember is that when Piniella joined the Reds he wanted a fireballer for the closer role. He had Franco, who was a quality reliever, but didn't throw that hard. Ultimately, of course, was traded for hard throwing Randy Myers.

Quite a trade. Franco went on to a Hall of Fame type career with the Mets. Myers was the main closer of the Nasty Boys and led the Reds to a world's championship.

Other bullpenners I admired included Rob Murphy, a lefty in the late 1980s, who pitched in a lot of games (87 one season) and the Graves/Williamson tandem in 1999.

If I ever managed a baseball team I would have a tandem of two closers. I thought the Graves/Williamson tandem was tremendous and always gave the Reds a fresh pitcher who was able to close games.

RedsBaron
05-23-2012, 03:04 PM
Can you imagine a reliever winning 18 games? He must have come in early a lot, and pitched quite a few innings at a time.

Relief pitchers did have a lot more decisions back in the 1950s and 1960s. For example in in 1963 Ron Perranoski went 16-3 with the World Champion Dodgers. He started no games but finished 47 with 21 saves, pitching 129 innings with a 1.67 ERA and 179 ERA+.
In 1966 Phil "The Vulture" Regan had a similar season for Walter Alston's Dodgers, going 14-1 with no starts but 48 games finished, 21 saves, 116.2 innings, a 1.62 ERA and 203 ERA+.
Alston of course was the Dodgers manager in 1974 when Mike Marshall had his 106 game/208 innings effort for LA that Spitball mentioned.
Alston did sometimes use his starting pitchers in relief. In 1965, while Sandy Koufax went 26-8 with 27 complete games in 41 starts, Koufax also had two relief appearances, with two saves. Koufax had 8 shutouts, a then record 382 strikeouts, 335.2 innings,a 2.04 ERA and 160 ERA+. He also threw a perfect game. He then capped the '65 season with shutouts in game five and game seven of the World Series, the latter game on only two days rest.

Kc61
05-23-2012, 03:08 PM
Relief pitchers did have a lot more decisions back in the 1950s and 1960s. For example in in 1963 Ron Perranoski went 16-3 with the World Champion Dodgers. He started no games but finished 47 with 21 saves, pitching 129 innings with a 1.67 ERA and 179 ERA+.
In 1966 Phil "The Vulture" Regan had a similar season for Walter Alston's Dodgers, going 14-1 with no starts but 48 games finished, 21 saves, 116.2 innings, a 1.62 ERA and 203 ERA+.
Alston of course was the Dodgers manager in 1974 when Mike Marshall had his 106 game/208 innings effort for LA that Spitball mentioned.
Alston did sometimes use his starting pitchers in relief. In 1965, while Sandy Koufax went 26-8 with 27 complete games in 41 starts, Koufax also had two relief appearances, with two saves. Koufax had 8 shutouts, a then record 382 strikeouts, 335.2 innings,a 2.04 ERA and 160 ERA+. He also threw a perfect game. He then capped the '65 season with shutouts in game five and game seven of the World Series, the latter game on only two days rest.

Koufax is the greatest pitcher I ever saw and nobody else comes close.

The reason some relievers had a lot of wins is this idea back then that you only had one or two relievers to use in key spots. These teams basically relied on about 7 pitchers, maybe 4 starters and 2 or 3 relievers. Everybody else was a mop up guy.

So when the Dodgers were in a close game it would be Ron Perranoski in his era, or Phil Regan in his.

westofyou
05-23-2012, 03:09 PM
Relief pitchers did have a lot more decisions back in the 1950s and 1960s. For example in in 1963 Ron Perranoski went 16-3 with the World Champion Dodgers. He started no games but finished 47 with 21 saves, pitching 129 innings with a 1.67 ERA and 179 ERA+.
In 1966 Phil "The Vulture" Regan had a similar season for Walter Alston's Dodgers, going 14-1 with no starts but 48 games finished, 21 saves, 116.2 innings, a 1.62 ERA and 203 ERA+.
Alston of course was the Dodgers manager in 1974 when Mike Marshall had his 106 game/208 innings effort for LA that Spitball mentioned.
Alston did sometimes use his starting pitchers in relief. In 1965, while Sandy Koufax went 26-8 with 27 complete games in 41 starts, Koufax also had two relief appearances, with two saves. Koufax had 8 shutouts, a then record 382 strikeouts, 335.2 innings,a 2.04 ERA and 160 ERA+. He also threw a perfect game. He then capped the '65 season with shutouts in game five and game seven of the World Series, the latter game on only two days rest.

Yeah Alston was known for leaning on his stars, his handling of the deciding game in the 62 playoffs was one fraught with decisions that were made because he carried a small pitching staff