There is any number of times when pitchers hit a batter 52 CC Sabathia World Series Champion 2009 thank you for the memories signature shirt small acknowledgment. That acknowledgment can come in a couple of forms: the pitcher may mouth “you ok?” to the guy he just plunked, the pitcher may tap his chest meaning “my bad”, the pitcher may just point a finger acknowledging the unintentional nature of the incident. I’ve seen this stuff happen over the years, not all the time, but on enough occasions where it’s no longer surprising. Even a tough guy like CC Sabathia has asked the guy he just hit, “you good?” The very best lefthanders in baseball history are on the list. How should they be ranked, though? Who was the greatest? We can eliminate Tommy John and CC Sabathia immediately. Too low in all categories. Same for Kershaw, who has been great, but he’s 31 and appears to have entered a decline phase. He leads this group in ERA+, but that figures to drop considerably before he’s done.
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He is also nowhere near the leaders in career WAR. 52 CC Sabathia World Series Champion 2009 thank you for the memories signature shirt Johnson rank the highest in WAR and in ERA+. Hard to ignore that. Spahn’s best asset is that he pitched for a very long time, but his ERA+ is considerably lower than the best listed here. I can see no way that Spahn can be ranked higher than Johnson or Grove, no matter what your criteria. Spahn is the opposite of Koufax, really. Spahn did not have the highest peak but had a long career. Koufax had a very high peak, but a short career. Spahn would rank as having greater career value, and Sandy wins at the highest peak value.