Cy Young was the Real Deal Back in the Day

Cy Young

Cy Young. ~ His name is synonymous with so many things larger than life about pitching in the big leagues.

…. “Pitcher of the Year!” ~ What are the only two words we think of for the best two single pitchers of the season in each league on an annual basis? ~ They aren’t simply words. They’re a name. ~ “Cy Young” ~ short for “Cy Young Award” ~ the formal name that’s been given that isn’t even needed in full expression to convey the meaning of the following question as it passes between two baseball fans each late August. ~ “Whose taking the Cy Young this year?”

…. Cy Young was a member of the original 13-inductee 1937 first class of players chosen for the 1939 grand opening of the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York. ~ And why not? ~ His reasons for inclusion were far greater than a one-column synopsis could possibly cover. You may as well just go to Cy’s stat page at Baseball Reference .com and scope out all the data titles embossed in black to denote his all time leadership. The Cy Young page looks as though someone spilled a pepper shaker bottle on it as you were examining Cy Young’s deep and enduring list of great accomplishment.

…. Young’s 511 wins and 315 losses are both all time records, the kind that no one else is likely ever to break because of the way the game has so dramatically changed in a little over one century’s time. The wins are clearly attributable to Cy Young’s greatness during an era in which most winning pitchers completed more than half the games they started. The losses were just there as a bi-product tail of Young’s greatness as a winner.

…. Cy completed 749 of the 815 games he started. ~ both are career MLB records. He also pitched in relief in 91 games to bring his total games pitched to 906, but that is not the record in pitching appearances. Reliever Jesse Orosco holds the all-time game appearance mark with 1,252.

…. Mr. Young gave up 2,147 earned runs and 7,092 hits in 7,356.0 innings pitched ~ all for MLB career records ~ but he only surrendered 138 dead ball era home runs in 22 years and did finish with a career 2.63 ERA.

…. How’s this one for a busy afternoon thought? Cy Young also holds the MLB career record for most batters faced at a whopping total of 29,565. ~ Now that’s a lot of men with wood in their hands and malice in their hearts toward the long and short-haul of a pitcher’s best interests.

That’s OK. ~ Old Cy could give as well as he took. In 22 seasons, he won, at least, 20 games per season on 16 different occasions. It was mostly up from 20 when Cy went over that line ~ with a 5-season climb above 30 wins for the cyclonic wonder!

Nobody’s ever forgotten you, Cy Young, nor ever should they. Few also know too that during that first 20th century 1903 World Series contest between your Boston American league club and the Pittsburgh Nationals that you also helped out in the Bean Town ball park ticket booth during one of the games you were not scheduled to pitch.

And why not? Whether it was during the actual first World Series or at some other big attendance game during the regular season, you were helping your club out where you were needed that day, ~ were you not? ~ And that sometimes included handling the fans’ need for access to the ball park for the best available seats or places to stand among the overflowing throng of excited early era baseball supporters.

Bryce Harper

Wow! ~ What are the chances that Bryce Harper will ever help the Phillies punch tickets at the turnstiles a single time over the next 13 year-run of his gazillion dollar playing  contract? ~ Yes, we do know. It’s a different world today.

 

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Bill McCurdy

Principal Writer, Editor, Publisher

 

 

 

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3 Responses to “Cy Young was the Real Deal Back in the Day”

  1. shinerbock80 Says:

    The Phillies sold over 100,000 tickets in the 24 hours after they announced the Bryce Harper signing. Most ever in one day for the franchise. I’d say THAT’s punching some tickets.

  2. bhick6 Says:

    It may surprise you that the Washington Nationals stationed a bunch of their players at the various entrance gates to greet the fans for a fan appreciation day during one of the early seasons after major league baseball returned to Washington in 2005. I recall Nick Johnson greeting me and handing me some kind of souvenir booklet, or something like that. Don’t think it was in 2005, so it must have been 2006, 2008, or 2009, since those were the only other seasons he played for the team.

    But agree with you that it’s unlikely Bryce Harper will be doing such a thing for the Phillies.

    Bill Hickman

  3. Rick B. Says:

    Bryce Harper gets a Sunday off & the following exchange with management occurs:

    Phillies front office: “Bryce, how would you feel about taking tickets and greeting fans at the turnstiles today?”

    Harper: “Clown question, bro.”

    (And didn’t Harper copyright that phrase, just as Pat Riley did with “threepeat”?)

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