“Big Train” keeps rolling
MAY 12, 1926
Walter “Big Train” Johnson won his 400th game on this date in baseball
history. Only two pitchers have reached that plateau. The other was
winner of an astonishing 511 games. You know Cy. They named an award after him.
But I digress, Walter Johnson came from
Kansas. He broke into the majors
with the Washington Senators in 1907 at age 19. He pitched for the next 21
years, finishing with records like 36-7, 33-12, 23-7, 25-13, 20-7, for a team
that lost more than it won (The Senators finished under .500 eleven of the
twenty-one seasons Johnson pitched for them).
Walter Johnson was said to have the fastest fastball in
major history, of course there were no radar guns in the teens and twenties, so
we can’t really be sure. Here are some figures from the “I didn’t know that”
category that we are sure about;
pitched 110 shutouts – more than anyone else.
38 games 1-0.
Remarkably, 26 of his losses were 1-0.
He could hit too. Johnson finished the 1925 season with a
.433 batting average. Still a major league record for pitchers.