One Chart To Explain Pedro And The Big Unit’s Greatness

Here is the full list of pitchers (minimum 1,000 innings pitched) who averaged more than 10 strikeouts per nine innings and fewer than 3.5 walks per nine innings.

Rk Player SO9 BB9 IP From To Age G GS W L BB SO Tm
1 Randy Johnson 10.61 3.26 4135.1 1988 2009 24-45 618 603 303 166 1497 4875 MON-SEA-HOU-ARI-NYY-SFG
2 Pedro Martinez 10.04 2.42 2827.1 1992 2009 20-37 476 409 219 100 760 3154 LAD-MON-BOS-NYM-PHI

That’s it. Randy Johnson and Pedro Martinez. (Thanks to @mlbrandonfandom for the research.)

For what it’s worth, Roger Clemens had a SO/9 of 8.6 and a BB/9 of 2.9. John Smoltz‘s was 8.0 and 2.6.

That, however, is not enough for all voters. Forget Mike Berardino, who has taken significant abuse for leaving both Martinez and Johnson off of his ballot (and made a name for himself). Let’s take a look at a voter who included Johnson – but not Martinez, because Pedro just isn’t all that.

Rick Gosselin of the Dallas Morning News explained himself in an email to Michael Silverman:

“I’m judicious with the term ‘first-ballot Hall of Famer,’ ” wrote Gosselin. “Not all Hall of Famers are created equally in my eyes. A select few are deserving of that first ballot honor. … It doesn’t mean I don’t think they are Hall of Famers. This is a selection process — not an all-or-nothing vote on one player, one year. I’m just very select with those I vote on the first ballot. I reserve those votes for the extraordinary. Randy Johnson with his 300 wins and five Cy Youngs was a first ballot in my eyes. Pedro is certainly deserving of the Hall of Fame, but not in my eyes on the first ballot.”

Here is Gosselin’s full ballot, which is otherwise unobjectionable.

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