On this day in 1972 Salomon Torres was born in San Pedro de Macoris in the Dominican Republic. He was 17 when the Giants signed him as an amateur free agent in 1989, and made his major league debut with them as a starter in 1993. He pitched primarily as a starter but struggled in the majors for his first five seasons, falling back into the minors in 1997 and not returning to the big leagues until 2002.
The Pirates moved Torres to the bullpen full time in 2004, though, and revitalized his career. Before moving to the bullpen he had a 5.24 career ERA and walked over four batters per nine innings. From 2004 on his ERA dropped to 3.34 and his walks per nine fell to 3.2.
Following the 2007 season the Pirates traded Torres to the Brewers, and he reportedly considered retiring instead of coming to Milwaukee. He eventually decided to join the team and became one of its undersung heroes, stepping into Eric Gagne's vacated closer role and recording 28 saves for the playoff-bound Crew.
Torres turns 40 today. With help from Brewerfan.net and the B-Ref Play Index, we'd also like to wish a happy birthday to:
- AZL Brewer Francisco Rivero, who turns 21.
- 1998 Brewer Rod Henderson, who turns 41.