Wednesday, January 06, 2010
Tale of the Tape: Steve Carlton vs. Randy Johnson
So after many long games and thousands of strikeouts later...Randy Johnson has finally decided to retire. Personally I wish he would have retired when he was a Diamondback rather than trying to prove himself and make more money. Why do so many players feel they have to prove something? You got your ring. You got your strikeouts.
So where does he rank all-time? Personally I think he is a top 3 all-time left hander. But is he better, statistically than Steve Carlton......LET'S FIND OUT.
(Only thing to remember during these awards is that Carlton pitched 24 years vs. Johnson's 22 years.)
Carlton pitched 5,271 innings. Johnson pitched 4,135 innings. The only reason Carlton pitched more is due to the fact that back in the day the Phillies bullpen was not up to par as it is today and Carlton would go deep into the games. Carlton had 254 complete games compared to Johnson's 100 complete games.
The "K" Award
Carlton struckout 4,136 batters in 5,217 innings. Johnson struckout 4,875 batters in 4,135 innings.
Long Ball Award
It is rare for a pitcher to hit a home run during a game. Surprisingly Carlton had 13 homeruns in his career vs. Johnson's lonely 1 (came with the Diamondbacks in 2008). Carlton also had 6 triples while Johnson had zero. Lastly, Carlton had one grand slam while Johnson had zero.
Outta Here Award
Many pitchers these days give up the long ball. Carlton gave up 414 homeruns and Johnson narrowly avoided the loss with only 411. If Johnson continued for the next two years I am sure that he would past Carlton but this is a career look not an estimated look.
Starting pitchers aren't supposed to be come into games but on two occasions Carlton and Johnson did just that. Carlton and Johnson both have 2 career saves.
Most Likely to Kick Your Ass Award
Both of these men are fierce and love the game of baseball very much. Carlton stood tall at 6'4" and is currently 65 years old and collecting his social security in Florida. Johnson stood 6'10" and is only 46 years old. Johnson's reach is far further than Carlton's. However, Carlton does talk a mean game and has been known to not turn anyone down with a rude comment. Johnson is tall, lanky and sometimes dopic.
The Elite Club Award
Rare accomplishments happen in the MLB without going unnoticed. One is the 9 pitches/9 strikes/side retired. Unfortunately Carlton never accomplished this probably due to the fact that many hitters during the 80's were slash hitters and much quicker and beat out infield hits. However, Johnson did it August 23, 2001 with the Diamondbacks in the 6th inning. Well done. More fitting is that he did it in a crucial inning where most pitchers tapper off and begin to show signs of fatigue. In that game Johnson had 16 strikeouts in 7 innings and wound up losing the game 5-1 to the Pirates.
Winner-Tie. However, this may be a tie but since Carlton was a Philly the winner is....
*Reason for the slight edge is that Carlton didn't punch a camera on Broadway like Johnson. Consulation prize to Johnson....Anger Management.