December 21, 1995 – After hearing of an offer from the Baltimore Orioles, Yankees owner George Steinbrenner decides to stop fooling around with righty David Cone and signs him for 3-years and $18 million.
The deal couldn’t have worked out better for the Yankees especially considering the fact that Cone missed most of ’96 with an aneurysm in his pitching arm as the Yankees won two World Series behind him. In three seasons he had a 39-15 record, a 3.15 ERA, 144 ERA+, and struckout 502 batters in 474.2 innings. In ’98 he finished 4th in the Cy Young voting with a 20-7 record.
Cone would go on to play two more seasons with the Yankees and despite pitching a perfect game in 1999, he was not a major factor in winning the World Series in ’99 or 2000. After the perfect game against the Montreal Expos on July 18, 1999 Cone was somewhat disappointing going 6-7 with a 4.82 ERA down the stretch. He did win two playoff games, one against Boston in the ALCS and one against the Braves in the World Series, but in 2000 he wouldn’t even be a part of the rotation by the end of the year.
In total Cone played five and a half seasons in Pinstripes and won four World Series titles. Despite the brief time with the Bombers, he is likely to be remembered as a major historical figure in Yankee lore for years to come thanks to his leadership and his 6-1 post season record.