By Ken Rappoport
Who are the best pitchers within the heritage of baseball? who're the best pitchers pitching at the present time? What makes a glass nice? From the heroes of the day prior to this like Cy younger to trendy superstars like Mariano Rivera, writer Ken Rappoport seems at ten of the best ballplayers (Grover Cleveland Alexander, Lefty Grove, Walter Johnson, Sandy Koufax, Christy Mathewson, Satchel Paige, Mariano Rivera, Nolan Ryan, Warren Spahn, Cy younger) to ever stand atop a major-league pitcher's mound.
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Extra resources for Baseball's Top 10 Pitchers
But for six years, from 1961–66, he dominated baseball as few have done in the game’s history. Koufax led the National League in earned run average five straight years, led in wins three times, won three Cy Young Awards, and pitched four no-hitters—the last a perfect game. 95 earned run average in helping the Dodgers win three Series. One of his greatest seasons: 1963, when he won 25 games and lost only 5. New York Yankees catcher Yogi Berra had seen more than he wanted of Koufax after the Dodgers’ left-hander struck out a record 15 batters in the opening game of the 1963 World Series against the Yankees.
The Twins won Game 6 to tie the Series at three games apiece. The Dodgers called on Koufax to pitch Game 7 on only two days’ rest. Koufax had developed an arthritic elbow and pitched in constant pain. At the start of the season, Koufax’s elbow was so bad it was questionable whether he’d ever be able to pitch again. Somehow, Koufax managed to pitch more than 300 innings, set a season strikeout record, and win 26 games to lead the Dodgers from sixth to first in the National League race. Now it was Game 7.
Young’s career began with a try-out for a minor league team in Canton, Ohio, in 1890. It was Young against the team’s star hitter. Young didn’t have a uniform, or a catcher. ” Following a season in the minors, the Cyclone tore through the majors after joining the Cleveland Spiders in 1890. For thirteen of fourteen seasons starting in 1891, Young won no less than 21 games. It was part of his record total of 511 victories. On May 5, 1904, a baseball game in Boston attracted an unusually large and boisterous crowd for a weekday.