Saturday, October 08, 2005
Christy Mathewson Dies
Being that the playoffs are upon us, it only seems appropriate to honor the man who had, almost inarguably, the greatest single series post season pitching performance in history: Christy Mathewson. The New York Giants, Mathewson's team, opened the 1905 World Series at the home field of the
Mathewson then started--on two days' rest--Game Three for the Giants, again at
The Giants' won Game Four and manager John McGraw would ask Mathewson to come back and pitch the potential clinching game on one days’ rest. Mathewson was facing a third A's opposing pitcher, Charles "Chief" Bender. Bender had won Game Two for the A's and once again pitched well, allowing just two runs. However, Mathewson was again even better, throwing his third shutout of the series, allowing just five hits as the Giants wrapped up the title.
Mathewson's final line was a mind-blowing three games started, twenty-seven innings pitched, fourteen hits and one walk allowed (that's an average of under five baserunners per nine innings) while striking out eighteen. Mathewson’s strikeout to walk ratio was an astounding eighteen-to-one, and he did so while striking out more men than he allowed to reach base. He won three games of a five game series--seventy-five percent of his team's victories--all in starts. There have been some exceptional post-season pitching performances since then. But if you ask me, Mathewson still reigns supreme.