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Warren Spahn

Warren Spahn

Position(s):
P
Born:
April 23, 1921
Bats:
Left
Throws:
Left
Height:
6'
Weight:
172 lbs
Major League Debut:
4-19-1942 with BSN
Allstar Selections:
1953 TSN, 1957 CY, 1957 TSN, 1958 TSN, 1961 LG, 1961 TSN
Hall of Fame:
1973

Intro

In a career that spanned three decades, Warren Spahn's teammates included Paul Waner and Tug McGraw. A World War II veteran who missed four years of baseball while he was a foot soldier in Europe, Spahn still won 363 games - the most ever by a left-handed pitcher. He won 177 games after his 35th birthday, and anchored the Braves' staff for 17 seasons, helping them to two pennants and a World Series title in 1957.

Unform Number

#16 (1942), #21 (1946-1965)

Quotes From

After what I went through overseas, I never thought of anything I was told to do in baseball as hard work. You get over feeling like that when you spend days on end sleeping in frozen tank tracks in enemy threatened territory. The Army taught me something about challenges and about what's important and what isn't. Everything I tackle in baseball and in life I take as a challenge rather than work.

Replaced By

Bobby Bolin

Best Season

Spahn was 23-7, completed 24 of his 32 starts, and saved three games. He led the NL with a 2.10 ERA and also in WHIP.

Factoid 1

On April 15th, 1952, in the last home opener in Braves Field in Boston, 4,694 fans saw Warren Spahn lose 3-2 to Brooklyn's Preacher Roe.

Factoid 2

Tom Glavine, Warren Spahn, and Early Wynn are the only pitchers in history to win 300 games despite never striking out 200 batters in any season.

Transition

Before 1940 Season: Signed by the Boston Bees as an amateur free agent; November 23, 1964: Purchased by the New York Mets from the Milwaukee Braves; July 22, 1965: Signed as a Free Agent with the San Francisco Giants; July 22, 1965: Released by the New York Mets; October 15, 1965: Released by the San Francisco Giants.

Strengths

Command of his pitches.

Weaknesses

None

Feats

On September 16th, 1960 at the age of 39, Spahn earned his 11th 20-win season with a no-hitter against the Phillies. Spahn also set a Milwaukee club record with 15 strikeouts in the victory... On October 5, 1958 Spahn shut out the Yankees on two hits in Game Four of the World Series. In that game, Spahn stopped Hank Bauer's 17-game World Series hitting streak... Five days past his 40th birthday, on April 28, 1961, Spahn became the second-oldest pitcher (after Cy Young) to hurl a no-hitter, blanking the Giants 1-0. Hank Aaron drove in the only run off loser Sam Jones. It was Spahn's 290th win and 52nd shutout... On August 11, 1961, Spahn's 2-1 victory against the Cubs made him the 13th 300-game winner... In 1963, at the age of 42, Spahn became the oldest 20-game winner. It was his 13th 20-win season, tying Christy Mathewson.

Cracker Jack Old-Timers

In the first annual Cracker Jack Old-timers Classic at Washington's Robert F. Kennedy Stadium on July 19, 1982, 75-year-old Luke Appling hit a 250-foot homer off Spahn to help the AL to a 7-2 win over the NL in a five-inning battle of baseball legends. As Appling rounded the bases, he shouted "Thanks Spahnie!"

June 14, 1952

On the same day that the Braves signed Henry Aaron to his first ML contract, Spahn tied Jim Whitney's NL record of 18 strikeouts in a game. In a 15-inning, 3-1 loss to the Cubs, Hal Jeffcoat's two-run triple wins it, while Spahn's homer is the only Braves' score.

Forty-Year Old 20-Game Winners

Cy Young, 1907 (age 40)... 21-15 Cy Young, 1908 (age 41)... 21-11 Eddie Plank, 1915 (age 40)... 21-11 Pete Alexander, 1927 (age 40)... 21-10 Warren Spahn, 1961 (age 40)... 21-13 Warren Spahn, 1963 (age 42)... 23-7 Gaylord Perry, 1978 (age 40)... 21-6 Phil Niekro, 1979 (age 40)... 21-20 Jamie Moyer, 2003 (age 41)... 21-7

Spahn's Record, by Age

Age 21-29 (86-58, 3.07) Age 30-39 (202-124, 2.95) Age 40-44 (75-63, 3.44)

Notes

In 1949, Spahn chatted briefly with Commissioner Happy Chandler prior to a game. With a 97-degree heat beating down on the field, Spahn made a rules suggestion to the commish. "Why not shift the umpires every three innings? That would prevent one umpire from having to work the entire game behind the plate. It would make things easier, I think, for umpires, and it might result in better work, throughout the game, on balls and strikes." Chandler agreed to pass the suggestion on to NL President Ford Frick, but the idea was never acted upon.

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Tagged:
1948 World Series, 1957 World Series, 1973 Hall of Fame, Baseball History, Boston Braves, Casey Stengel, Cy Young Award, Milwaukee Braves, WWII, Warren Spahn, Warren Spahn Award

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