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{{Infobox MLB player
name=Christy Mathewson
image=Christy Mathewson2.jpg
nicknames=Big Six, The Christian Gentleman, Matty
birthplace=Factoryville, Pennsylvaniamarker,

United Statesmarker
deathplace=Saranac Lake, New Yorkmarker,

United Statesmarker
debutdate=July 17
debutteam=New York Giants
finaldate=September 4
finalteam=Cincinnati Reds
stat1label=Win-Loss record
stat2label=Earned run average
teams= '''As Player''' *[[San Francisco Giants|New York Giants]] ({{by|1900}}–{{by|1916}}) *[[Cincinnati Reds]] ({{by|1916}}) '''As Manager''' *[[Cincinnati Reds]] ({{by|1916}}–{{by|1918}}) |highlights= * [[World Series]] champion ({{wsy|1905}}) * 373 career wins (3rd all-time) * 2.13 career [[Earned run average|ERA]] (8th all-time) * 1.059 career WHIP (5th all time) * Won 20 games or more 13 times, won 30 games or more 4 times. * Pitched 79 shutouts (3rd all time) * Won NL [[Triple crown (baseball)|Pitcher's Triple Crown]] in 1905 and 1908 * Five-time ERA champion (1905, 1908, 1909, 1911, 1913) * Five-time strikeout champion (1903, 1904, 1905, 1907, 1908) * Pitched two [[no-hitter]]s. *[[San Francisco Giants#Retired Numbers|Name honored]] by the Giants. * [[Major League Baseball All-Century Team]] |hofdate=[[1936 in baseball|1936]] |hofvote=90.7% (first ballot) }} '''Christopher "Christy" Mathewson''' (August 12, 1880 – October 7, 1925), nicknamed '''"Big Six", "The Christian Gentleman", or "Matty"''', was an [[United States|American]] right-handed [[pitcher]] in [[Major League Baseball]]. He played in what is known as the [[dead-ball era]]; and in {{by|1936}} was elected into the [[National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum|Baseball Hall of Fame]] as one of its [[National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum#Inductees|"first five"]] inaugural members. ==Early life== Mathewson was born in [[Factoryville, Pennsylvania]] and attended [[Bucknell University]], where he served as class president and played on the school's [[American football|football]] and [[baseball]] teams.{{cite web|title = Christy Mathewson |publisher = |url= |accessdate = 2006-10-28}} He was also a member of the [[Fraternities and sororities|fraternity]] of [[Phi Gamma Delta]].{{cite web|title = Christy Mathewson |publisher =|url= |accessdate = 2007-03-16}} His first experience of semi-professional baseball came in 1895, when he was just 14 years old.Kashatus (2002), p. 27. The manager of the Factoryville ball club asked him to pitch in a game with a rival team in Mill City, Pennsylvania. Mathewson helped his hometown team to a 19–victory, but with his batting rather than his pitching. He continued to play baseball during his years at Bucknell, pitching for minor league teams in [[Honesdale, Pennsylvania|Honesdale]] and Meridian, Pennsylvania.Kashatus (2002), p. 33. ==Professional career== ===Minor league career & early major league career=== In {{by|1899}}, Mathewson left college and signed to play professional baseball with Taunton of the [[New England League]]. The next season, he moved on to play on the [[Norfolk, Virginia|Norfolk]] team of the Virginia-North Carolina League. He finished that season with a 20-2 record.{{cite web|title = Christy Mathewson | |url= |accessdate = 2006-10-28}} In July of that year, the [[San Francisco Giants|New York Giants]] purchased his contract from Norfolk for $1,500.. Between July and September 1900 Mathewson appeared in six games for the Giants. He started one of those games and compiled a 0-3 record. Displeased with his performance, the Giants returned him to Norfolk and demanded their money back. Later that month, the [[Cincinnati Reds]] picked up Mathewson off the Norfolk roster. On December 15, 1900, the Reds quickly traded Mathewson back to the Giants for [[Amos Rusie]].{{cite web |title=Christy Mathewson | |url= |accessdate=2007-01-31}} ===Career with the Giants=== [[Image:Christy Mathewson, New York NL (baseball) (LOC).jpg|thumb|left|200px|Mathewson, warming up before a game.]] During his 17-year career, Mathewson won 373 games and lost 188 for an outstanding .665 winning percentage. His career [[Earned run average|ERA]] of 2.13 and 79 career [[shutout#baseball|shutout]]s are among the best all-time for pitchers and his 373 [[win (baseball)|win]]s is still number one in the [[National League]], tied with [[Grover Cleveland Alexander]]. Employing a good fastball, outstanding control, and, especially, a new pitch he termed the "fadeaway" (later known in baseball as the "[[screwball]]"), which he learned from teammate [[Dave Williams (1900s pitcher)|Dave Williams]] in [[1898 in baseball|1898]]{{cite book |title=[[The Neyer/James Guide to Pitchers]] |author=[[Bill James]] and [[Rob Neyer]] |date=2004 |page=296}}, Mathewson recorded 2,502 career [[strikeout]]s against only 844 [[base on balls|walks]]. He is famous for his 25 pitching duels with [[Mordecai Brown|Mordecai "Three Finger" Brown]], who won 13 of the duels against Mathewson's 11, with one no-decision.{{cite web |url= |title=''The Ballplayers: Christy Mathewson'' | |date=(September 4, 1916) |accessdate=2009-04-03}} [[Image:Mathewson in NY uniform.jpg|thumb|left|175px|Mathewson in NY uniform.]] Mathewson's Giants won the [[1905 World Series]] over the [[Oakland Athletics|Philadelphia Athletics]]. Mathewson was the starting pitcher in Game 1, and pitched a 4-hit [[shutout]] for the victory. Three days later, with the series tied 1-1, he pitched another 4-hit shutout. Then, two days later in Game 5, he threw a 6-hit shutout to clinch the series for the Giants. In a span of only six days, Mathewson had pitched three complete games without allowing a run. The 1905 World Series capped an impressive year for Mathewson as he had already won the National League [[Triple crown (baseball)|Triple Crown]] for pitchers, and threw the second [[no-hitter]] of his career. He claimed the Triple Crown again in {{by|1908}}, and by the time he left the Giants, the team had captured four more National League pennants, in addition to the aforementioned {{by|1905}} appearance in the World Series. As noted in ''[[The National League Story]]'' (1961) by [[Lee Allen (baseball)|Lee Allen]], Matty never pitched on Sunday. The impact of this on the Giants was minimized, since, in the eight-team National league, only the [[Chicago Cubs]] ([[Illinois]]), [[Cincinnati Reds]] ([[Ohio]]), and [[St. Louis Cardinals]] ([[Missouri]]), played home games in states that allowed professional sports on Sunday. Along with his brother [[Henry Mathewson]], he holds the major league record for combined wins by brothers playing for the same team: Christy 373, Henry 0. ===Three years with the Reds=== On July 20, {{by|1916}}, Mathewson's career came full circle when he was traded to the Cincinnati Reds along with [[Edd Roush]]. He won one game with the Reds and served as their [[manager (baseball)|manager]] for the next three seasons. Mathewson and Brown wrapped their respective careers by squaring off on September 4, 1916. The game was billed as the final meeting between the two old baseball warriors. The high-scoring game was a win for Mathewson's Reds over Brown's Cubs. [[Image:Christy Mathewson Baseball.jpg|thumb|200px|left|Mathewson in Giants uniform.]] ==WWI and after== In 1918, Mathewson enlisted in the [[United States Army]] for [[World War I]]. He served overseas as a Captain in the newly formed Chemical Service along with [[Ty Cobb]]. While in [[France]], during a training exercise he was accidentally gassed and consequently developed [[tuberculosis]]. Although he returned to serve as a coach for the Giants from {{by|1919}}–{{by|1920}}, he spent a good portion of that time in [[Saranac Lake, New York|Saranac Lake]] fighting the illness, initially at the [[Trudeau Sanitorium]], and later in a house that he had built. In {{by|1923}}, Mathewson got back into professional baseball when he served as part-time president of the [[Atlanta Braves|Boston Braves]]. ==Death and legacy== [[Image:The Christy Mathewson Cottage.jpg|thumb|Mathewson's private "[[Cure Cottages of Saranac Lake|cure cottage]]" in Saranac Lake]] Two years later, he died in [[Saranac Lake, New York]]. He is buried at Lewisburg Cemetery in [[Lewisburg, Pennsylvania]]. Members of the [[Pittsburgh Pirates]] and the [[Minnesota Twins|Washington Senators]] wore black armbands during the [[1925 World Series]]. Mathewson had died on the day the Series began, [[October 7]]. * ''[[Factoryville, Pennsylvania#Christy Mathewson Day|Christy Mathewson Day]]'' is celebrated as a holiday in his hometown of Factoryville, Pennsylvania, on the Saturday closest to his birthday. *[[Bucknell University|Bucknell]]'s football stadium is named "[[Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium]]." *Hall of Fame pitcher [[Tom Seaver]] has often been compared with Mathewson. Singer/pianist/songwriter [[Dave Frishberg]]'s song "Matty" is a sentimental tribute to Christy. The song may be found on Frishberg's albums "Quality Time" and "Let's Eat Home," plus a live version on "Retromania: At the Jazz Bakery," which contains other baseball related songs). Frishberg's [[liner notes]] and occasional commentary to his audience help explain the background to many of these songs. [[Image:Mathewson statue.png|thumb|200px|left|Statue of Mathewson in Christy Mathewson Park in his hometown of [[Factoryville, Pennsylvania]].]] *Mathewson is mentioned in the poem ''"Lineup for Yesterday"'' by [[Ogden Nash]]: {{Quote box2 |width= 18em |border= 4px |align= center |bgcolor= #FAF0E6 |halign= center | title=''Lineup for Yesterday''|quote=''M is for Matty,''
''Who carried a charm''
''In the form of an extra''
''brain in his arm.'' |source= — ''[[Ogden Nash]]'', [[Sport magazine|''Sport'' magazine]] (January 1949){{cite web |url= |title=Line-Up For Yesterday by Ogden Nash |accessdate=2008-08-20 |work=[[Ogden Nash]] |publisher=''Sport Magazine'' |date= }}}} ==Baseball honors== *In 1936, Christy Mathewson was voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame as one of the famous "First Five" inductees into the HOF, along with [[Babe Ruth]], [[Ty Cobb]], [[Walter Johnson]] and [[Honus Wagner]]. He was the only one of the five who didn't live to see his induction.Kashatus (2002), p. 120. * His jersey, denoted as "NY", has been retired by the Giants and hangs in the left-field corner of [[AT&T Park]]. Uniform numbers were not used in those days. * In 1999, he ranked number 7 on ''[[The Sporting News]]''' list of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players, the highest-ranking National League pitcher. *[[ESPN]] selected his pitching performance in the [[1905 World Series]] as the greatest playoff performance of all time.{{cite web |url= |title=50 Greatest Playoff Performances |accessdate=2008-08-20 |work= |publisher='''' |date= }} During WW II, a 422 foot Liberty Ship named in his honor, SS Christy Mathewson, was built in Richmond, CA in 1943. ==Statistics== '''[[Baseball statistics|Career statistics]]:'''
{{col-start}} {{col-2}} ''Pitching'' {| cellpadding=3 cellspacing=0 border=1 width=400 |- align=center | [[Win (baseball)|W]] | [[Loss (baseball)|L]] | [[Win (baseball)|WP]] | [[Games pitched|GP]] | [[Games started|GS]] | [[Complete game|CG]] | [[Shutout|ShO]] | [[Save (sport)|SV]] | [[Innings pitched|IP]] | [[Hit (baseball)|H]] | [[Base on balls|BB]] | [[Strikeout|SO]] | [[Batters faced by pitcher|BFP]] | [[Earned run average|ERA]] | [[Walks plus hits per inning pitched|WHIP]] |- align=center | 373 | 188 | .665 | 635 | 551 | 434 | 79 | 28 | 4,780.7 | 4,218 | 844 | 2,502 | 19,136 | 2.13 | 1.059 |} {{col-end}} ''Hitting'' {| cellpadding=3 cellspacing=0 border=1 width=500 |- align=center | [[Games played|G]] | [[At bat|AB]] | [[Hit (baseball)|H]] | [[Double (baseball)|2B]] | [[Triple (baseball)|3B]] | [[Home run|HR]] | [[Run (baseball)|R]] | [[Run batted in|RBI]] | [[Stolen base|SB]] | [[Base on balls|BB]] | [[Strikeout|SO]] | [[Batting average|AVG]] | [[On base percentage|OBP]] | [[Slugging percentage|SLG]] | [[On-base plus slugging|OPS]] |- align=center | 646 | 1,684 | 362 | 50 | 12 | 7 | 151 | 165 | 20 | 116 | 74 * | .215 | .272 | .271 | .543 |} * Strikeouts not counted for batters until 1910 in the NL, 1913 in the AL.

See also



  • Kashatus, William C. (2002). Diamonds in the Coalfields: 21 Remarkable Baseball Players, Managers, and Umpires from Northeast Pennsylvania. Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Company. ISBN 9780786411764.

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