The Phillies announced Monday that they are moving Jamie Moyer to the bullpen -- at age 46. Friends, this is an amazing development.
For one thing, Moyer has won more games (26) over the past two seasons than (among others) Josh Beckett, Carlos Zambrano, Justin Verlander and Roy Oswalt -- and the only left-handers with more wins than him in that time are Cliff Lee (31), Johan Santana (29) and CC Sabathia (29). But that isn't even the amazing part.
No, the amazing part is that you don't run across a whole lot of 46-year-old relief pitchers in your travels, even if those travels are in a time machine. I looked into this, and here's what I found:
• The first time Moyer walks through the bullpen gates, he'll become just the ninth man in history to relieve in a major league game at age 46 or older, just the sixth in the past 75 years and only the fourth in the past 50 years.
• What makes this even more noteworthy is that the rest of that group in the past half-century consists of only (A) knuckleballers (Hoyt Wilhelm and Phil Niekro) and (B) Jesse Orosco.
• But if we stop rounding off ages and go by age to the day, Moyer (46 years, 266 days old) will become the oldest non-knuckleballer to come out of anybody's bullpen since (ready for this?) the immortal Hod Lisenbee stomped out of the Reds' bullpen on Sept. 7, 1945 -- at 46 years, 349 days. Moyer is older than Orosco, whose last game came at 46 years, 159 days. And the other non-knuckleballer on the list -- Satchel Paige -- made his final relief appearance at 46 years, 71 days. (Paige did start a game at age 58, but that doesn't count.)