Jason Christiansen

After two lackluster years as a Pittsburgh Pirates reliever sporting a 5.27 ERA, Christiansen was demoted to Single-A in early 1997 to train as a starter. When the Midwestern southpaw re-emerged in the majors, he was once again relegated to the bullpen, but this time lowered his ERA by almost four runs since the previous year.

After three moderately successful seasons with the Bucs as a lefty specialist set-up man, Christiansen became coveted when trade deadlines rolled around for teams in postseason stretches. In July 2000, he was dealt to the St. Louis Cardinals for infielder Jack Wilson, and a year and a day later, was traded to the San Francisco Giants for a minor-league pitcher.