After the response to a recent column filled with useless information, it appears that most of you readers are easily amused and entertained. So, this time the Old Duck will hurl more baseball tidbits your way by focusing on pitching facts from our national pastime. As always, thanks to SABR and baseball-reference.com for much of the source material.
Warren Spahn had 20 or more Wins in 13 separate seasons…and 10 of them came after the age of 30!
> Greg Maddux had 15 or more Wins in 18 separate seasons.
> Don Sutton had 10 or more Wins in 21 separate seasons.
> Nolan Ryan registered at least 5 Wins in 26 consecutive seasons.
> Hoyt Wilhelm won 124 games in relief.
> Gene Garber lost 108 games in relief.
> Andy Pettitte pitched 18 seasons and never had a losing record.
> Phil Nierko won 121 games after the age of 40.
> Steve Barber issued 10 or more walks in a game four times!
> In 1958-59, the Pirates Roy Face had 22 consecutive Wins.
> Bert Blyleven won 15 games by the score of 1-0.
> Nolan Ryan had 7 No-Hitters and 5 One-Hitters.
> Tom Seaver started on opening day 16 times.
> Hall-of-Famer Robin Roberts allowed 505 Home Runs!
> Chris Sale has the best Strikeout / Walk ratio in history…5.37.
> Sandy Koufax pitched for 12 years and held opposing hitters to a Batting Average of .205.
> Pedro Martinez pitched for 18 years and held opposing hitters to an On-Base Percentage of .276 (Koufax was at .285).
> In his 1974 Cy Young Award season with the Dodgers, Mike Marshall pitched in 106 games and finished 83 of them.
> Bob Feller had 36 complete games in 1946.
> In the Mets inaugural season of 1962, Roger Craig lost 24 games (he had 10 Wins).
> Ron Guidry’s 1978 season produced the highest winning percentage (.893) of any 20-game winner in history…he was 25-3.
> Bob Gibson’s 1968 ERA of 1.12 is just ahead of Christy Mathewson (1.14 in 1909) and Walter Johnson (1.14 in 1913).
> In 1985, the Cardinals John Tudor pitched 10 Shutouts…he only had 6 others in his 12-year career.
> Francisco Rodriguez had 62 Saves in 2008…the next highest is 57 by Bobby Thigpen (1990) and Edwin Diaz (2018).
> Pitching for the Mets in 1994, Bret Saberhagen had a strikeout-to-walk ratio of 11-to-1.
> In 1966, Tony Cloninger of the Braves threw 27 Wild Pitches and led the NL in Walks, but finished with a winning record (14-11).
> Johan Santana won the pitching “triple crown” (Wins, ERA & Strikeouts) in 2006 with the Twins.
> Jose Lima started 33 games in 2000 and 32 games in 2005…his ERA in those seasons was 6.65 & 6.99.
> Bobo Newsom’s 5.08 ERA in 1938 was the highest ever for a 20-game winner.
> In 1916, Babe Ruth pitched 323 2/3 innings and didn’t allow a home run.
> Steve Carlton’s 27 Wins for the last-place Phillies in 1972 equaled 46% of their 59 team wins.
> Rick Sutcliffe (1984) & Bartolo Colon (2002) each won 20 games in a season during which they were traded.
> Wally Bunker of the Orioles won 19 games in 1964 when he was 19 years old.
> Pitching for the Mariners in 1980, Mike Parrot had a record of 1-16…the year before, he was 14-12.
> The 1971 Orioles had four 20-game winners…Dave McNally, Pat Dobson, Jim Palmer & Mike Cueller.
> Juan Marichal had six seasons in which he had 20 Wins, 200 Strikeouts and an ERA below 3.00.
> Tom Seaver struck out the last ten batters of the game against the Padres in 1970…he had 19 for the game.
If you’ve hung in there this long, a bonus is in order in the form of a few fielding facts to test your knowledge.
> In 1984, Steve Garvey of the Padres played 159 games at 1B and didn’t make an error.
> Dick Stuart finished last in fielding average for 1B in 1961, 1963 & 1964…you don’t get nicknamed “Dr. Strangeglove” for no reason.
> In his rookie season of 1984, the Phillies Juan Samuel made 33 errors at 2B.
> Graig Nettles & Brooks Robinson each had over 400 assists at 3B in two separate seasons.
> Lou Brock made 19 errors in the outfield for the 1966 Cardinals.
> As the CF of the Phillies from 1949-1958, Richie Ashburn had 495 or more Putouts six times.
> In 2003, Mike Matheny caught 138 games for the Cardinals and didn’t make an error.
> In 1974-75, Yankees Catcher Thurman Munson made a total of 45 errors.
> In 1968, the Cubs Randy Hundley caught 160 games…he caught 150+ in two other seasons.
> In 1974, Reds Pitcher Clay Kirby made 10 errors.
Hope a few of these names brought back some memories…talking baseball never gets old.