Monday, July 29, 2013

The Philadelphia Phillies Retire Carlton's Jersey

On July 29, 1989,  the Philadelphia Phillies retired the no. 32 formerly worn by Steve Carlton.  

Carlton spent 15 seasons as a member of the Phillies and joined Richie Ashburn, no. 1; Jim Bunning, no. 14; Mike Schmidt, no. 20; and Robin Roberts, no. 36 as the only men to have their numbers retired by Philadelphia.

Along with the five men that have their numbers retired by the Phillies, there is also Jackie Robinson’s no. 42 jersey that is retired by every team in Major League Baseball.  

Also, Grover Cleveland played in the era before MLB used uniform numbers, so he is honored with the letter “P”, along with Chuck Klein, who wore a variety of numbers with the Phillies throughout his career.

Steve Carlton enjoyed the best years of his career while playing for the Philadelphia Phillies.  He joined the club in 1972 and made seven of his 10 all-star appearances. He also led Philadelphia to a World Series title in 1980 and in that same season he won his third of four career Cy Young awards, which ranks tied for third all-time behind only Randy Johnson and Roger Clemens and tied with Greg Maddux. Along with a gold glove in 1981 he also won two World Series titles in 1967 and 1980. Five times Carlton was in the top 10 in Most Valuable Player (MVP) voting, but he never placed higher than fifth, as he did in three of his four Cy Young award winning seasons.

Carlton would finish his career with 4,136 strikeouts, which was second all-time behind only Nolan Ryan, but since Clemens and Johnson have passed him putting him in fourth. But even so Carlton’s mark is more than 400 more than the next pitcher, Burt Blyleven who finished his career with 3,701 strikeouts.

Carlton's career numbers include 329 wins and 244 losses and two saves in 741 games with 709 starts over 5,217.2 innings pitched. He also threw 254 complete games and had 55 shut outs. He compiled a 3.22 ERA with 4,136 strikeouts and just 1,833 walks while allowing only 414 home runs.

Once during his career Carlton led the league in ERA, wins, complete games and strikeouts, in 1972, his first year with the Phillies. He recorded a 27 wins with 30 complete games, a 1.97 ERA and 310 strikeouts, and had an impressive eight shutouts. 1972 was Carlton's first Cy Young award winning season. 

Carlton would lead the league in wins three more times, but his total of 27 wins in 1972 was the highest single season total of his career. 

Carlton would league the league in complete games two more times, but his total of 30 in 1972 was the highest single season total of his career.

Carlton would also lead the league in strikeouts four more times, but the 310 strikeouts in 1972 was the highest single season total of his career.

The 1.97 ERA in 1972 was his lowest single season ERA of his career and the only time in which he led the league in ERA.

In 1982 Carlton led the league in shutouts with six, however that was the not his single season career high as in 1972 he tossed eight shutouts, although that was not a league high that year.

Carlton was inducted into Cooperstown Hall of Fame in 1994 with 95.8 percent of the vote on the first ballot in which he appeared.