The 100 Greatest in 100 Days: #51 Curt Schilling

Up next at #51 is starting pitcher Curt Schilling. The two most important traits a pitcher can have are limiting contact and avoiding walks. Schilling’s arsenal might have featured the best mix of both the league has ever seen. Schilling is the only pitcher since 1920 to pitch at least 3,000 innings with a K/BB ratio of at least 4.38. He’s the only pitcher in history with 3,000 strikeouts and fewer than 715 walks. Schilling and Juan Marichal are the only two pitchers since 1920 with at least 215 career wins and fewer than 715 walks. What makes Schilling’s power/control mix so remarkable is that he was able to maintain it while also being one of the preeminent workhorses in Major League Baseball. He’s the last pitcher to throw back-to-back seasons of 250 innings, and he led the league in complete games four times. Since 1988, only Randy Johnson and Greg Maddux have more complete games. Schilling’s regular-season numbers are Hall of Fame-worthy on their own. He’s the last pitcher to have three seasons of at least 21 wins and he led the league in strikeout to walk ratio five times, but it’s the success he had in the postseason that makes him one of the most unique pitchers baseball has ever seen. Over 133 and 1/3 career postseason innings, Schilling went 11-2 with a 2.23 ERA and .97 WHIP while winning four World Series titles in four appearances. He was named the 1993 NLCS MVP and 2001 World Series MVP. He holds the record for most innings pitched in a single postseason without a loss (48 and 1/3 in 2001). He holds the record for most strikeouts in a single postseason (56 in 2001). He holds the record for Win Probability added in a single postseason (2.1 in 2001), and he has the highest postseason winning percentage in history among starting pitchers with at least 55 postseason innings.

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