Walter Johnson

Walter Johnson
Birthdate 11/6/1887
Death Date 12/10/1946
Debut Year 1907
Year of Induction 1936
Teams Senators
Position Pitcher

Walter Johnson was the only member of the 3,000 strikeout club for more than 50 years; he’s still first in career shutouts & second in wins.

Leave a comment

In the collection:

Walter Johnson was universally revered as one of the greatest pitchers in baseball history

Walter Johnson was universally revered as one of the greatest pitchers in baseball history

When Commissioner Kenesaw Mountain Landis wrote this letter on April 12, 1921, Walter Johnson was less than a year removed from his 300th win. Respected as a true gentleman and one of the finest pitchers in baseball history, Johnson was part of the first class of Cooperstown inductees. Landis, just
Though he twice hit over .400, Sisler called his 2-1 pitching victory over Walter Johnson his greatest thrill

Though he twice hit over .400, Sisler called his 2-1 pitching victory over Walter Johnson his greatest thrill

George Sisler is one of five men to top the .400 mark in multiple seasons. The Browns first baseman hit .407 in 1920 and .420 two years later. His expert batsmenship left him with a .340 career average. Despite his many accomplishments with the stick, Sisler called a pitching performance his greates
Walter Johnson chartered the 3,000-strikeout club and was the only member until the day he died

Walter Johnson chartered the 3,000-strikeout club and was the only member until the day he died

Walter Johnson recorded his 3,000th strikeout on July 18, 1923 by striking out nine in a 13-inning, complete-game win over Cleveland. The Indians lineup included three Hall of Famers who struck out a combined four times. Fellow Cooperstown ace Stan Coveleski proved to be Johnson’s 3,000th vict
Walter Johnson's two postseason appearances came under Bucky Harris

Walter Johnson's two postseason appearances came under Bucky Harris

Walter Johnson pitched 21 years for the Washington Senators. Despite being one of the greatest pitchers in the history of the game, Johnson and his team made the postseason only twice. Both times it was with Bucky Harris as manager. Harris broke in with the Senators in 1919 at age 22 and became the
Johnson was rewarded for his 21-year career with a sold gold lifetime pass

Johnson was rewarded for his 21-year career with a sold gold lifetime pass

Eight years after Walter Johnson’s playing career ended, he was awarded a lifetime pass to all MLB games. The passes were the brainchild of National League president Ford Frick. Players with 10-19 years received solid silver passes. Three-hundred-and-eighty-six retired men received the silver
Walter Johnson is Harry Hooper's pick as the right-handed pitcher on his all-time team

Walter Johnson is Harry Hooper's pick as the right-handed pitcher on his all-time team

Shown here is Harry Hooper’s picks for his all-time team. All of the picks from the four-time World Champion and Hall of Famer involve players from his era. Hooper’s choice for right-handed pitcher is Walter Johnson. A quick look at the record book reveal that The Big Train dominated Hoo
Johnson was supremely respected while active and perhaps more so in the decades since

Johnson was supremely respected while active and perhaps more so in the decades since

Walter Johnson just may be the greatest pitcher ever. While active and in the decades since, The Big Train is universally respected. In this letter from 1982, Joe Sewell imagines how Johnson would fare against more modern hitters. Sewell writes in part, “I sure would like to see some of these grea
Walter Johnson was the 5th recipient of the William J. Slocum Award

Walter Johnson was the 5th recipient of the William J. Slocum Award

The New York chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America created the William J. Slocum Award in 1930. Given to a person judged to have given long and meritorious service to the game. When Walter Johnson got the honor in 1934, he joined Babe Ruth, Wilbert Robinson, and John McGraw on the l
Don Drysdale broke Johnson's 1913 scoreless streak with the Dodgers in '68

Don Drysdale broke Johnson's 1913 scoreless streak with the Dodgers in '68

Walter Johnson’s 1913 season was the finest of his 21-year big league career. He paced the Junior Circuit in wins (36), ERA (1.14), strikeouts (243), and shutouts (11). His 15.1 WAR is the highest single-season mark since the 1880s. That season he also threw 55 2/3 consecutive scoreless inning

Stories about Walter Johnson

The William J. Slocum Award is one of MLB’s most prestigious honors

October 3rd, 2020 Leave a comment

William J. Slocum Award

The oldest professional sport in the United States, baseball remains America’s National Pastime to this day. The game’s current leagues were flourishing soon after the end of the 1800s. Every city with a team had multiple newspapers reporting their games. Sportswriters worked from stadium press boxes describing their team’s contests in great detail. The widespread news coverage helped grow the game.
In 1908 writers banded together to form the Baseball Writers Association of America. The BBWAA’s founding mission was to “ensure professional working conditions for beat writers at all MLB ballparks and to promote uniformity of scoring methods.
Early in the 1900s New York City boasted three big league teams, the Giants and Dodgers of the National League, and the Highlanders – who later became the Yankees – in the American League. The Big Apple soon became the hub of the baseball world.
One of the writers who covered the New York teams was William J. Slocum. Respected for his baseball knowledge and writing ability, Slocum quickly rose to the top of his profession. Well-liked, he helped organize the New York chapter of the BBWAA.
The Bill Slocom Award is one of the most prestigious awards baseball has to offer. The little-known honor has been given to more than 50 members of the Hall of Fame.

Read More >

Lifetime passes were the brainchild of NL President Ford Frick; here’s a pictorial history

June 18th, 2016 Leave a comment

Lifetime pass

A newspaper man turned league publicist turned league president came up with a brilliant idea in 1934 — reward longtime National League players with a lifetime pass to all NL games. Senior Circuit owners approved Ford Frick’s proposal at the league meeting in December of ’34. A few months later, Frick sent out ornately decorated paper Lifetime Passes to the NL’s greatest players. He even sent one to Babe Ruth who appeared in all of 28 games for the Boston Braves in 1935. A 21-year veteran of the American League, the Babe was grateful if not surprised when he remarked, “At least the National League has a heart”. An image of the original paper pass presented to Hall of Fame outfielder Sliding Billy Hamilton can be seen below. A similar pass curiously issued to Stan Coveleski, a lifetime American Leaguer is also shown. Perhaps shamed by Ruth’s remarks, the American League joined forces in 1936 to issue a pass to all Major League contests. Players with twenty or more years of service received a solid gold pass. Seventeen men qualified for the true “golden ticket” — Ruth, Fred Clarke, Ty Cobb, Eddie Collins, Bill Dahlen, Harry Davis, Red Faber, Walter Johnson, […]

Read More >

3 responses to “Walter Johnson”

  1. TazJohnPaul says:

    Love see articles about my Great Uncle Walter Johnson. Thank you

  2. Wynn Sands says:

    Simply the best pitcher of ALL time.

  3. Kevin Duffy says:

    I agree, the greatest of all time. I read his biography years ago. A wonderful person as well.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

"Whoever wants to know the heart and mind of America had better learn baseball…"

~Jacques Barzun, 1954