Shirley was very impressive as a 22-year-old rookie in 1977, striking out 11 Reds in his first ML start on April 10, and retiring the first 25 Astros he faced on April 23 before settling for a 4-2 win. By season’s end he had led the Padres in wins (12), innings (214), and strikeouts (146), but those totals would all be career highs, as he spent the next ten seasons spot-starting and in the bullpen. He was traded to the Cardinals with Rollie Fingers and Gene Tenace for seven players in December 1981, then traded to the Reds the following year before signing with the Yankees as a free agent in 1983. In New York, he posted a career-best 2.64 ERA as a lefthanded set-up man in 1985. His high school catcher was Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Steve Largent.