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46 Facts About Steve Carlton – A Ten-time All-Star Baseball Player

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Steve Carlton is a former Major League Baseball left-handed pitcher, who has pitched for six different teams from 1965 to 1988. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1994.

Former Phillie pitcher and Hall of Famer Steve Carlton is honored on the field before a game between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Washington Nationals at Citizens Bank Park on August 13, 2011 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Phillies won 11-3.
(Photo : Hunter Martin/Getty Images) Former Phillie pitcher and Hall of Famer Steve Carlton is honored on the field before a game between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Washington Nationals at Citizens Bank Park on August 13, 2011 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Phillies won 11-3.
  1. He is the first pitcher to win 4 CY Young Awards in a career. He won in 1972, 1977, 190 and 1982.
  2. He is nicknamed as “Lefty” by his peers at Philadelphia Phillies.
  3. In the baseball history he is ranked at #11 with 329 career wins behind Greg Maddux, Roger Clemens and Warren Spahn.
  4. In the Major League Baseball he holds the record for the most runners picked off base with 144. Jerry Koosman with 82 in at second.
  5. Carlton never produced a no-hitter but he was able to produce six one-hitters. One-hitter is referred to the situation where a pitcher restricts the opposition to score only one hit in the game.
    Steve Carlton #32 of the Philadelphia Phillies pitches during the 1986 season MLB game against the San Diego Padres at Jack Murphy Stadium in San Diego, California.
    (Photo : Stephen Dunn/Getty Images) Steve Carlton #32 of the Philadelphia Phillies pitches during the 1986 season MLB game against the San Diego Padres at Jack Murphy Stadium in San Diego, California.
  6. He was born as Steven Norman Carlton on 22 December 1944 in Miami, Florida to Joe and Anne Carlton.
  7. Joe Carlton was a maintenance worker at the Pan-American Airlines.
  8. He studied at North Miami High School and Miami Dade College during 1960’s.
  9. He played Little League and American Legion Baseball during his childhood days. During his time at Miami Dade College he signed with St Louis Cardinals for bonus of $5000.
  10. He was 20 years old when he debuted with St Louis Cardinals in 1965 and within two years he became a regular in the team.
    Steve Carlton throws out the first pitch before the Philadelphia Phillies take on the Tampa Bay Rays during game three of the 2008 MLB World Series on October 25, 2008 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
    (Photo : Chris Gardner-Pool/Getty Images) Steve Carlton throws out the first pitch before the Philadelphia Phillies take on the Tampa Bay Rays during game three of the 2008 MLB World Series on October 25, 2008 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
  11. Carlton was 6 feet 4 inches during his early baseball days and was famous for hard fastball and slider.
  12. He set a record for most strike out in 1969 when he struck out 19 New York Mets.
  13. He signed the contract with Cardinals for $26000 in 1969 but after more success he was holding for $50000 as opposed to their offer of $31000.
  14. Due to salary dispute and growing tension, Gussie Busch, owner of Cardinals traded Carlton with another pitcher Rick Wise from Philadelphia Phillies in 1972. This trade is considered as one of the most lopsided deals in history.
  15. Tim McCarver described the trade as “a real good one for a real good one.” Both the pitchers were considered among the best pitchers with Carlton winning 77 games to Wise’s 75.
    Pitcher Steve Carlton #32 of the Philadelphia Phillies wipes his hands with a towel in the dugout during a game in 1986 at Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
    (Photo : Diamond Images/Getty Images) Pitcher Steve Carlton #32 of the Philadelphia Phillies wipes his hands with a towel in the dugout during a game in 1986 at Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
  16. Although overall team performance of Philadelphia Phillies was 59-97, Carlton led with 27 league wins, 30 complete games and 310 strikeouts.
  17. Once asked about his fondest memories at Phillies and he replied “Hiding form Larry Shenk and bill Giles.”
  18. For his performance in 1972 league he won his first CY Young Award and also Hickok Belt as top professional athlete of the year.
  19. In that season he also made records by contributing to 46% of his team’s victory, which still stands in the modern major league history.
  20. He had learnt Eastern Martial Arts Technique to improve his pitching. The technique required him to twist his fist to the bottom of 5 gallon bucket of rice.
  21. During the 1972 season commentators remarked regularly that Carlton’s slider was unhittable. He also had a fastball, a looping curve ball, a change-up and a screw ball.
  22. Carlton’s training technique came under severe questioning from media when he lost 20 games in 1973. He later severed all ties with media and vowed never to answer press questions for the rest of his career.
  23. One of the reporter remarked “the two best pitchers in the National League don’t speak English: Fernando Valenzuela and Steve Carlton.” Valenzuela was from Mexico and Carlton refused to speak with media.
  24. However Carlton accepted an interview in 1994 with Pat Jordan at his residency in Durango, Colorado. The interview was published in Philadelphia magazine’s April 1994 issue as “Thin Mountain Air.”
  25. He was instrumental in Phillies winning their first World Series in 1980. Phillies also became the last of the original sixteen franchises to win a World Series.
    Hall of Famer Steve Carlton attends the Baseball Hall of Fame Induction ceremony on July 31, 2005 at the Clark Sports Complex in Cooperstown, New York.
    (Photo : Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) Hall of Famer Steve Carlton attends the Baseball Hall of Fame Induction ceremony on July 31, 2005 at the Clark Sports Complex in Cooperstown, New York.
  26. Carlton became the only pitcher to influence a complete game shutout and hit a home run in the same game. He did so in three different decades.
  27. He won gold Glove Award for his fielding during 1981 and helped Phillies win another tournament in 1983. However they lost in finals of 1983 World Series to Baltimore Orioles.
  28. He also became the fifteenth player to win 300 games in a career, when he won against St Louis Cardinals in 1983.
  29. Carlton is placed at #9 in all time list of strike out by Pitcher. During 1983 season Walter Johnson held a 55 year old record for most strikeout at 3508. Carlton along Nola Ryan and Gaylord Perry started the series with just 100 shy of record.
  30. Carlton joined San Francisco Giants after he was released by Phillies during 1986. By that time he had lost his touch and fared poorly.
  31. He achieved his #4000 strikeout playing for the Giants. He achieved it striking out Eric Davis.
  32. He joined Chicago White Sox in 1986 even though he announced his retirement a few months back playing for Giants. His stay with Giants was of a very short duration.
    Steve Carlton #32 f the St. Louis Cardinals poses for a portrait circa 1970.
    (Photo : Louis Requena/MLB Photos via Getty Images) Steve Carlton #32 f the St. Louis Cardinals poses for a portrait circa 1970.
  33. He joined hands with his teammate Phil Niekro to play against New York Yankees in 1987 when he joined Cleveland Indians in that year. Both of them were 300 game winners.
  34. He was also selected to play for National League All Star team of 1977 in Yankee Stadium but he didn’t appear.
  35. His reputation with media surfaced again when he was photographed with his teammates at White House and all his teammate’s names were listed except him.
  36. He was in and out of many teams within a short period due to his non performance. In 1989 New York Yankees offered him their facility for training. This was the closest he came to be employed.
  37. Although he was #11 overall he set the record for most number of strikeouts by a left hand pitcher (4136).
  38. He was inducted into Baseball Hall of Fame in 1994 with 96% vote to his name, the highest percentage ever by a player.
  39. In his honor a Statue was erected outside Citizens Bank Park in 2004 by his former team Philadelphia Phillies.
  40. The Phillies also retired his jersey no: 32 in 1989 a remarkable honor for a player.
  41. He has maintained that his greatest rival was Tom Seaver, but in his entire career he has competed with Nola Ryan.
  42. In 1999 he was nominated for the Major League Baseball All Century Team; however he did not feature in the All Century Starter line up.
    Past player and Hall of Fame starting left-handed pitcher Steve Carlton #32 of the Philadelphia Phillies is introduced during the Pat Burrell 'Wall of Fame' Induction ceremony before a game against the Atlanta Braves at Citizens Bank Park on July 31, 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Phillies won 9-3.
    (Photo : Hunter Martin/Getty Images) Past player and Hall of Fame starting left-handed pitcher Steve Carlton #32 of the Philadelphia Phillies is introduced during the Pat Burrell 'Wall of Fame' Induction ceremony before a game against the Atlanta Braves at Citizens Bank Park on July 31, 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Phillies won 9-3.
  43. He appeared in an episode of “Married with Children” titled “Just Shoe it” in 1992. He is shown writing with his right hand.
  44. He was married to Beverly Carlton for thirty three years before getting divorce. They have 2 sons, Steven and Scotty.
  45. He first met Canadian born Beverly in 1964 when he was pitching in Winnipeg.
  46. Lefty is described by many former teammates at Phillies as a very private person. He would be ok with teammates but not with strangers.

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