John Clarkson

John Gibson Clarkson (July 1, 1861 – February 4, 1909) was a Major League Baseball right-handed pitcher. He played from 1882 to 1894. Born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Clarkson played for the Worcester Ruby Legs (1882), Chicago White Stockings (1884–1887), Boston Beaneaters (1888–1892), and Cleveland Spiders (1892–1894).

He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1963.

John Clarkson
John Clarkson Baseball
Clarkson in 1905
Born: July 1, 1861
Cambridge, Massachusetts
Died: February 4, 1909 (aged 47)
Belmont, Massachusetts
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
May 2, 1882, for the Worcester Ruby Legs
Last MLB appearance
July 12, 1894, for the Cleveland Spiders
MLB statistics
Win–loss record328–178
Earned run average2.81
Career highlights and awards
Member of the National
Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Baseball Hall of Fame Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg
Election MethodVeteran's Committee

Career overview

Clarkson compiled a career 328-178 record, placing him twelfth on the MLB list of all-time wins. Clarkson pitched over 600 innings in a season twice and won a career-high 53 games in 1885. In MLB history, only Charles Radbourn has won more games in a single season (59 in 1884). In just five seasons from 1885 to 1889, Clarkson won 209 games.

Clarkson had a wide variety of curve balls and was considered to be a calculating, scientific pitcher who carefully analyzed every hitter's weaknesses. Hall of Fame hitter Sam Thompson said of Clarkson: "I faced him in scores of games and I can truthfully say that never in all that time did I get a pitch that came where I expected it or in the way in which I guessed it was coming."[1]

At the time Clarkson retired from the game, he was the winningest pitcher in National League history.[1]

Aside from being a great pitcher, Clarkson was also a fair hitter. His 24 career home runs (in the deadball era) ranks 7th on the List of Major League Baseball all-time leaders in home runs by pitchers. He also had 232 career RBIs and 254 runs scored.

Total Baseball ranked Clarkson as the fourth best pitcher of all time behind Hall of Famers Cy Young, Christy Mathewson and Lefty Grove,[2] though Bill James ranks him lower at number 42 in his The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract.

Clarkson's election to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1963 was by the Veterans Committee.

Early years

Born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Clarkson was one of five sons of a prosperous jeweler.[3] Clakson had two brothers who were also major league pitchers: Dad Clarkson and Walter Clarkson. The three Clarkson brothers rank third in wins by brothers behind the Niekro and Perry brothers. The Clarkson's also had two maternal cousins, Walter Hackett and Mortimer "Mert" Hackett who played professional baseball.

After attending business school and playing semipro ball, Clarkson signed as a free agent with the Worcester Ruby Legs of the National League in 1882. Clarkson played his first major league game at age 20 on May 2, 1882. He played in three games for the Ruby Legs, finishing with a 1-2 record in 24 innings. The Worcester team folded after the 1882 season, and Clarkson pitched in the minors the following two years.[3]

Chicago White Stockings (1884–1887)

Chicago manager Cap Anson saw Clarkson pitching for Saginaw in the Northwest League in 1884.[3] On August 24, 1884, the White Stockings purchased him from Saginaw.

The White Stockings finished in fifth place in 1884, but Clarkson put in a strong performance, going 10-3 in 13 starts after being acquired from Saginaw. His .769 win percentage was the second best in the league, and his 2.14 ERA was sixth best.

Clarkson was known to be extremely sensitive to criticism. Shortly after his death in 1909, former Chicago player/manager Cap Anson noted that "not many know what amount of encouragement it took to keep him going." Anson recalled: "Scold him, find fault with him, and he would not pitch at all. Say to him after a game: 'Grand work, John, I will probably use you again tomorrow, for we've got to have that game,' and he would go out the next day and stand all batters on their heads.'" Alfred H. Spink, The National Game (1910), quoted in Bill James, The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract (2001), p. 873.[3]

John Clarkson as a player for the Chicago White Stockings.

A 53-win season in 1885

In 1885, Clarkson became Chicago's principal starting pitcher. In a remarkable feat of durability, Clarkson appeared in 70 games that year, pitched 623 innings and threw 68 complete games. He also won 53 games with an ERA of 1.85 (Adjusted ERA+ of 165).

On July 27, 1885, he pitched the only no-hitter of his career with a 4-0 win over the Providence Grays.[2]

His 50th win of the season occurred on September 19, 1885, a 10-3 victory over Boston. .[3]

The White Stockings won the 1885 National League pennant with 83 wins, 53 of which came from Clarkson. Clarkson started three games in the 1885 World Series against the St. Louis Browns, with a record of 1-1 and an ERA of 1.12, allowing only two earned runs in 16 innings.

Clarkson's performance in 1885 led the National League in wins (53) and strikeouts (308) and ranks as one of the most remarkable in major league history.

  • His 53 wins is the second highest single season total in MLB history.[4]
  • His 68 complete games is the seventh highest single season total in MLB history.[5]
  • His 70 games started is the eighth most in MLB history.[6]
  • His 632 innings pitched is the eighth most in MLB history.[7]

A 36-win season in 1886

In 1886, Clarkson shared the pitching load with Jim McCormick and Jocko Flynn, each of whom won at least 23 games and pitched over 250 innings. Clarkson had a record of 36-17, with 50 complete games and an ERA of 2.41 (Adjusted ERA+ of 150) in 466⅔ innings pitched. He also led the league with a career-high 313 strikeouts. On August 8, 1886, Clarkson struck out a team-record 16 batters against Kansas City.

The 1886 White Stockings finished with a record of 90-34 with a winning percentage of .726 that ranks as one of the highest in baseball history. After winning the National League pennant by 2½ games over the Detroit Wolverines, the White Stockings faced the St. Louis Browns in the World Series for the second consecutive year.

Clarkson pitched four games (three of which were complete games) in the 1886 World Series. He had a record of 2-2 with 28 strikeouts and an ERA of 2.04 in 31 innings pitched.

The sixth game, at St. Louis, was considered one of the greatest games ever played to that time. With the Browns ahead three games to two, Anson called on Clarkson to start his fourth game in six days. Clarkson responded with seven shutout innings, but gave up three runs in the eighth inning, and the game went to extra innings. In the bottom of the tenth inning, the Browns' center fielder Curt Welch singled (only the fourth hit off Clarkson) and moved to third on a sacrifice. Welch and Browns’ third base coach Arlie Latham tried to distract Clarkson with heckling and faking moves toward home. When Welch finally attempted the steal, Chicago's catcher, King Kelly, had called for a pitchout, but Clarkson threw a wild pitch, and Welch scored the World Series winning run.[2][3]

A 38-win season in 1887

In 1887, Clarkson was 38-21 for Chicago with 56 complete games and a 3.08 ERA. However, King Kelly was sold to Boston before the season began, and the team began a decline, dropping to third place in 1887. Clarkson, always a touchy temperament, reportedly became more difficult to handle after Kelly's departure.[3]

Boston Beaneaters (1888–1892)

John Clarkson

A 33-win season in 1888

On April 3, 1888, the White Stockings sold Clarkson to the Boston Beaneaters for $10,000—a huge sum at the time. Clarkson followed teammate King Kelly, who had been sold from Chicago to Boston the previous year. Boston had paid $10,000 apiece for Kelly and Clarkson, and they became known as the "$20,000 Battery."

Clarkson pitched five great seasons for Boston. He was 33-20 in 1888, starting 54 games and pitching 53 complete games with an ERA of 2.76.

A 49-win season in 1889

The 1889 season was Clarkson's best for Boston. He started a career-high 72 games and had an astounding record of 49-19 with 68 complete games, 284 strikeouts, and a 2.73 ERA in 620 innings pitched.

While Clarkson's 1889 numbers are comparable to those he posted in 1885, the game and distance to the plate had changed, and no other pitcher pitched nearly as many games or innings as Clarkson in 1889. As a measure of his dominance, Clarkson's 49 wins were 11 more than any other pitcher; his 620 innings were 200 more than any other pitcher; and his 68 complete games were 22 more than any other pitcher. He also had twice as many shutouts as the next best pitcher. He was only the fourth pitcher to win the pitching Triple Crown, by leading the National League in wins, ERA and strikeouts.

On June 4, 1889, Clarkson became the first pitcher in major league history to strike out three batters on nine pitches, in the third inning of a 4-2 win over the Philadelphia Quakers.

Later years in Boston

Clarkson became involved in the players' rebellion in 1890, but then opted to remain with the Beaneaters.[3]

In 1891, Clarkson helped lead the Beaneaters to the National League pennant. Clarkson led the team with a 33-19 record, 47 complete games, and 460⅔ innings pitched.

During a game that carried into the dusk hours, Clarkson once pitched a lemon to the plate to persuade the umpire, Jack Kerins to call the game due to darkness. Kerins called the lemon a strike, and when shown by Boston's catcher that he had called a lemon a strike, Kerins finally called the game.[3][8]

Cleveland Spiders (1892–1893)

On June 30, 1892, after 16 starts and an 8–6 record, Boston's new manager, Frank Selee, released Clarkson. He was signed as a free agent by the Cleveland Spiders. Clarkson went 17-10 for the remainder of the 1892 season, for a season record of 25-16.

Clarkson was no longer the ace with the Spiders. The Spiders’ pitching staff included Cy Young, who won 36 games in 1892 and 34 games in 1893.

In 1893, Clarkson had the first losing record of his career, finishing 16-17 with a career-high ERA of 4.45.

After the 1893 season, Clarkson went on a hunting trip with his close friend Charlie Bennett, who had been his catcher from 1888 to 1890. Bennett got off the train in Wellsville, Kansas and when he tried to reboard, Bennett slipped and fell under the train's wheels. Bennett lost both of his legs in the accident. Clarkson witnessed the incident, and it was said to have severely affected his already unstable nature.

In 1894, Clarkson pitched his final year in the major leagues, playing his last game on July 12, 1894 and finishing 8-10 in 18 starts for the Spiders.

Life after baseball

After his baseball career ended, Clarkson moved to Bay City, Michigan and ran a cigar store there until 1906.[3][9]

In either 1905[3] or 1906,[2] Clarkson suffered a breakdown, was declared insane, and was committed to an insane asylum. Clarkson spent much of the next three years in mental hospitals.

During a visit with family in 1909, Clarkson fell seriously ill, and was admitted to the McLean Hospital in Belmont, Massachusetts, a well-known psychiatric clinic. He died there, of pneumonia, February 4, 1909, aged 47.[3]

Notable Achievements

  • National League pitching Triple Crown (1889)
  • National League ERA leader (1889)
  • National League wins leader (1885, 1887 and 1889)
  • National League winning percentage leader (1889)
  • National League innings pitched leader (1885 and 1887–1889)
  • National League strikeouts leader (1885, 1887 and 1889)
  • National League complete games leader (1885, 1887 and 1889)
  • Six 30-win seasons (1885–1889 and 1891)
  • Two 40-win seasons (1885 and 1889)
  • 53 wins in 1885 is second most in MLB history
  • Two seasons with 600 innings pitched (1885 and 1889)
  • Two 300 strikeout seasons (1885 and 1886)

See also


  1. ^ a b National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum: Hall of Famer detail Archived 2007-09-01 at the Wayback Machine at
  2. ^ a b c d Baseball History: 19th Century Baseball: The Players: John Clarkson at
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "The Top 100 Cubs Of All Time - #20 John Clarkson".
  4. ^ Single-Season Leaders & Records for Wins at
  5. ^ Single-Season Leaders & Records for Comp. Games at
  6. ^ Single-Season Leaders & Records for Games Started at
  7. ^ Single-Season Leaders & Records for Innings at
  8. ^ The Ballplayers – John Clarkson | Archived 2007-10-18 at the Wayback Machine at
  9. ^ :: JOHN CLARKSON'S OBIT Archived 2007-12-10 at the Wayback Machine at

External links

1886 World Series

The 1886 World Series was won by the St. Louis Browns (later the Cardinals) of the American Association over the Chicago White Stockings (later the Cubs) of the National League, four games to two. The series was played on six consecutive days running from October 18 to October 23 in Chicago and St. Louis.

The teams were judged to be approximately equal going into the series, with gamblers betting on the teams at even odds. However, Chicago pitcher Jim McCormick was sidelined by a chronic foot ailment after game 2, and third Chicago pitcher Jocko Flynn had already been lost for the season due to an arm ailment. An effort to use a substitute pitcher was protested by St. Louis, with the board of umpires flipping a coin to decide the matter in favor of the Browns. With his team unable to field a competent second starter, Chicagos ace John Clarkson proved unable to carry the full pitching load, tipping the series to St. Louis.

The series was decided in extra innings of game 6 by Curt Welch's so-called "$15,000 slide" following a passed ball. The decisive run scored by Welch became one of the most famous plays in the history of baseball in that era.

1887 Chicago White Stockings season

The 1887 Chicago White Stockings season was the 16th season of the Chicago White Stockings franchise, the 12th in the National League and the 3rd at the first West Side Park. The White Stockings finished third in the National League with a record of 71–50.

1887 Major League Baseball season

The 1887 MLB Season was the National League's twelfth season and American Association's sixth season. The Detroit Wolverines defeated the St. Louis Browns in a 15-game World Series match played in ten cities.

The Louisville Colonels set a Major League record which still stands for the most base on balls for a team in a game, with 19 against the Cleveland Blues on the 21st of September.

1888 Boston Beaneaters season

The 1888 Boston Beaneaters season was the eighteenth season of the franchise.

1889 Boston Beaneaters season

The 1889 Boston Beaneaters season was the nineteenth season of the franchise.

1890 Boston Beaneaters season

The 1890 Boston Beaneaters season was the 20th season of the franchise.

1891 Boston Beaneaters season

The 1891 Boston Beaneaters season was the 21st season of the franchise.

1893 Cleveland Spiders season

The 1893 Cleveland Spiders finished with a 73–55 record and a third-place finish in the National League.

1963 Baseball Hall of Fame balloting

Elections to the Baseball Hall of Fame for 1963 followed a system established for odd-number years after the 1956 election.

Namely, the baseball writers were voting on recent players only in even-number years.

The Veterans Committee met in closed sessions to consider executives, managers, umpires, and earlier major league players. It selected four people: 19th-century 300-game winner John Clarkson, turn-of-the-century outfielder Elmer Flick, 266-game winner Eppa Rixey, and outfielder Sam Rice, who had 2987 career hits.

Following the death of J. G. Taylor Spink in December, the Baseball Writers' Association of America inaugurated the Spink Award honoring a baseball writer. It would be conferred as part of the induction ceremonies in Cooperstown, which would help ensure at least one living, honored guest. Spink was the first recipient, deceased.

300 win club

In Major League Baseball, the 300 win club is the group of pitchers who have won 300 or more games. Twenty-four pitchers have reached this milestone. The New York Gothams/Giants/San Francisco Giants are the only franchise to see three players reach the milestone while on their roster: those players are Mickey Welch, Christy Mathewson, and Randy Johnson. Early in the history of professional baseball, many of the rules favored the pitcher over the batter; the distance pitchers threw to home plate was shorter than today, and pitchers were able to use foreign substances to alter the direction of the ball. The first player to win 300 games was Pud Galvin in 1888. Seven pitchers recorded all or the majority of their career wins in the 19th century: Galvin, Cy Young, Kid Nichols, Tim Keefe, John Clarkson, Charley Radbourn, and Mickey Welch. Four more pitchers joined the club in the first quarter of the 20th century: Christy Mathewson, Walter Johnson, Eddie Plank, and Grover Cleveland Alexander. Young is the all-time leader in wins with 511, a mark that is considered unbreakable. If a modern-day pitcher won 20 games per season for 25 seasons, he would still be 11 games short of Young's mark.

Only three pitchers, Lefty Grove, Warren Spahn, and Early Wynn, joined the 300 win club between 1924 and 1982, which may be explained by a number of factors: the abolition of the spitball, World War II military service, such as Bob Feller's, and the growing importance of the home run in the game. As the home run became commonplace, the physical and mental demands on pitchers dramatically increased, which led to the use of a four-man starting rotation. Between 1982 and 1990, the 300 win club gained six members: Gaylord Perry, Phil Niekro, Steve Carlton, Nolan Ryan, Don Sutton and Tom Seaver. These pitchers benefited from the increased use of specialized relief pitchers, an expanded strike zone, and new stadiums, including Shea Stadium, Dodger Stadium and the Astrodome, that were pitcher's parks, which suppressed offensive production. Also, the increasing sophistication of training methods and sports medicine, such as Tommy John surgery, allowed players to maintain a high competitive level for a longer time. Randy Johnson, for example, won more games in his 40s than he did in his 20s.Since 1990, only four pitchers have joined the 300 win club: Roger Clemens, Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, and Johnson. Changes in the game in the last decade of the 20th century have made attaining 300 career wins difficult, perhaps more so than during the mid 20th century. The four-man starting rotation has given way to a five-man rotation, which gives starting pitchers fewer chances to pick up wins. No pitcher reached 20 wins in a non strike-shortened year for the first time in 2006; this was repeated in 2009 and 2017.Recording 300 career wins has been seen as a guaranteed admission to the Baseball Hall of Fame. All pitchers with 300 wins have been elected to the Hall of Fame except for Clemens, who received only half of the vote total needed for induction in his first appearance on the Hall of Fame ballot in 2013 and lost votes from that total in 2014. Clemens' future election is seen as uncertain because of his alleged links to use of performance-enhancing drugs. To be eligible for the Hall of Fame, a player must have "been retired five seasons" or deceased for at least six months, Many observers expect the club to gain few, if any, members in the foreseeable future. Ten members of the 300 win club are also members of the 3,000 strikeout club.

Complete game

In baseball, a complete game (denoted by CG) is the act of a pitcher pitching an entire game without the benefit of a relief pitcher. A pitcher who meets this criterion will be credited with a complete game regardless of the number of innings played - pitchers who throw an entire official game that is shortened by rain will still be credited with a complete game, while starting pitchers who are relieved in extra innings after throwing nine or more innings will not be credited with a complete game. A starting pitcher who is replaced by a pinch hitter in the final half inning of a game will still be credited with a complete game.

The frequency of complete games has evolved since the early days of baseball. The complete game was essentially an expectation in the early 20th century and pitchers completed almost all of the games they started. In modern baseball, the feat is much more rare and no pitcher has reached 30 complete games in a season since 1975; in the 21st century, a pitcher has thrown 10 or more complete games in a season only twice.

John Clarkson (abolitionist)

Lieutenant John Clarkson (1764–1828) was a Royal Navy officer and abolitionist, the younger brother of Thomas Clarkson, one of the central figures in the abolition of slavery in England and the British Empire at the close of the 18th century. As agent for the Sierra Leone Company, Lieutenant Clarkson was instrumental in the founding of Freetown, today Sierra Leone’s capital city, as a haven for chiefly formerly enslaved African-Americans first relocated to Nova Scotia by the British military authorities following the American Revolutionary War.

John Clarkson not only founded Freetown, but was also the first governor of the settlement. Because of his work in establishing Freetown, John Clarkson is considered to be one of the founding fathers of Sierra Leone, alongside Granville Sharp, Thomas Peters, and Henry Thornton. To this day, the last prayer by John Clarkson at Freetown can be found in the houses of Creoles and other Sierra Leoneans alike. To the Nova Scotians, 'Governor Clarkson' was both 'Father' and their 'Moses' who delivered them into the promised land.

John Clarkson Jay

John Clarkson Jay (September 11, 1808 – November 15, 1891) was an American physician and notable conchologist. He was the grandson of Founding Father John Jay.

John Maddison

John Clarkson Maddison, (4 September 1921 – 29 August 1982) was a New South Wales politician, Attorney General, Minister for Justice and Deputy Leader for the Liberal Party of New South Wales in the cabinets of Robert Askin, Tom Lewis and Sir Eric Willis until the Liberal party lost the 1976 election. Maddison was first elected to the New South Wales Legislative Assembly for the Electoral district of Hornsby in 1962 until 1973 and thereon as member for Ku-ring-gai until his retirement in 1980.

List of Atlanta Braves team records

The Atlanta Braves are a Major League Baseball (MLB) franchise based in Atlanta. The Braves formed in 1876 as the Boston Red Stockings. After moving to Milwaukee for 12 years, the Braves relocated to Atlanta in 1966. Through 2010, the Braves have played 20,053 games, winning 9,945, losing 9,954, and tying 154, for a winning percentage of approximately .500. This list documents the superlative records and accomplishments of team members during their tenures in MLB.

Hank Aaron holds the most franchise records as of the end of the 2010 season, with ten, including most career hits, doubles, and the best career on-base plus slugging percentage. Aaron also held the career home runs record from April 8, 1974 until August 8, 2007. He is followed by Hugh Duffy, who holds eight records, including best single-season batting average and the best single-season slugging percentage record.Four Braves players currently hold Major League Baseball records. Duffy holds the best single-season batting average record, accumulating an average of .440 in 1890. Bob Horner and Bobby Lowe are tied with 13 others for the most home runs in a game, with four, which they recorded on May 30, 1890, and July 6, 1986, respectively. Red Barrett, a Brave for six years, holds the record for fewest pitches by a single pitcher in a complete game, with 58, which he achieved on August 10, 1944.

List of Boston and Milwaukee Braves Opening Day starting pitchers

The Braves are a Major League Baseball team that was originally based in Boston. They moved to Milwaukee in 1953 before moving to their current home, Atlanta in 1966. They played in the National League since its formation in 1876. At various points in the history in Boston, they were known as the Beaneaters, the Doves, the Rustlers and the Bees. During the 20th century until their move to Milwaukee, they played their home games primarily at two home ball parks – South End Grounds until 1914, and Braves Field from 1915 through 1952. They also played some home games at Fenway Park in 1914 and 1915, including Opening Day of 1915. Their home ball park in Milwaukee was County Stadium. The first game of the new baseball season for a team is played on Opening Day, and being named the Opening Day starter is an honor, which is often given to the player who is expected to lead the pitching staff that season, though there are various strategic reasons why a team's best pitcher might not start on Opening Day.The Braves used 40 different Opening Day starting pitchers in their 80 National League seasons they played prior to moving to Atlanta. The Braves won 46 of those games against 42 losses in those Opening Day starts. They also played two tie games.Warren Spahn had the most Opening Day starts for the Boston and Milwaukee Braves with ten between 1952 and 1964. Kid Nichols made six Opening Day starts between 1893 and 1901. Jim Whitney (1881–1885) and John Clarkson (1888–1892) each had five Opening Day starts. Tommy Bond (1877–1880), Vic Willis (1900–1904), Dick Rudolph (1915–1917, 1919), Al Javery (1942–1945) and Johnny Sain (1946–1949) each made four Opening Day starts. Irv Young (1906–1908), Bob Smith (1927–1929) and Ed Brandt (1932, 1934, 1935) each had three such starts. Other pitchers with multiple Opening Day starts for the Boston and Milwaukee Braves were Charles Radbourn, Jack Stivetts, Hub Perdue, Joe Oeschger, Joe Genewich, Danny MacFayden and Lew Burdette.

Prior to moving to Atlanta, the Braves played in the World Series four times. The played in the World Series as the Boston Braves in 1914 and 1948, and as the Milwaukee Braves in 1957 and 1959. They won the World Series in 1914 and 1957. Their Opening Day starting pitchers in World Series years were Lefty Tyler in 1914, Sain in 1948, and Spahn in 1957 and 1958. They lost their Opening Day game in 1914, 1948 and 1958, and won in 1957. In addition, the franchise won the National League championship eight times during the 19th century, prior to the existence of the modern World Series. Nichols was the team's Opening Day starting pitcher in three of those season, Clarkson and Bond in two of those seasons each, and Whitney was the Opening Day starting pitcher in one such season.

Jesse Barnes made an Opening Day start for the Braves against the New York Giants in 1925, after having made an Opening Day start for the Giants against the Braves in 1920. Spahn is the only pitcher to make an Opening Day start for both the Boston Braves and the Milwaukee Braves. Tony Cloninger, who made the last Opening Day start for the Milwaukee Braves in 1965 and the first for the Atlanta Braves in 1966, is the only pitcher to make an Opening Day start for both the Milwaukee and Atlanta Braves.

List of Chicago Cubs Opening Day starting pitchers

The Chicago Cubs are a Major League Baseball franchise based in Chicago that plays in the National League Central division. In the history of the franchise, it has also played under the names Chicago White Stockings, Chicago Colts and Chicago Orphans. The first game of the new baseball season for a team is played on Opening Day, and being named the Opening Day starter is an honor, which is often given to the player who is expected to lead the pitching staff that season, though there are various strategic reasons why a team's best pitcher might not start on Opening Day. The Cubs have used 68 different starting pitchers on Opening Day since they first became a Major League team in 1876. The Cubs have a record of 74 wins, 60 losses and 2 ties in their Opening Day games.

The Cubs have played in seven different home ball parks. They have played at their current home, Wrigley Field, since 1916. They have a record of 22 wins, 21 losses and 1 tie in Opening Day games at Wrigley Field. They had an Opening Day record of six wins, one loss and one tie at their other home ball parks, for a total home record in Opening Day games of 28 wins, 22 losses and 2 ties. Their record in Opening Day away games is 46 wins and 38 losses.

Ferguson Jenkins holds the Cubs record for most Opening Day starts with seven, in which his record was two wins, two losses and three no decisions. Carlos Zambrano has made six Opening Day starts. Larry Corcoran, Clark Griffith, Grover Cleveland Alexander, Charlie Root and Rick Sutcliffe have each made five Opening Day starts for the Cubs. Orval Overall, Lon Warneke, Bob Rush, Larry Jackson and Rick Reuschel each made four Opening Day starts for the Cubs, and Bill Hutchinson, Jon Lieber, Claude Passeau, Jack Taylor and Hippo Vaughn each made three such starts.

Five Cubs' Opening Day starting pitchers have been inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame: Griffith, Alexander, Jenkins, Al Spalding and John Clarkson. In addition, 300–game winner Greg Maddux was the Cubs' Opening Day starting pitcher in 1992. The Cubs have won the modern World Series championship twice, in 1907 and 1908. Overall was the Cubs' Opening Day starting pitcher both seasons, and the Cubs won both of those Opening Day games. Don Cardwell was the Cubs' Opening Day starting pitcher against the Houston Colt .45s on April 10, 1962, the first game in Houston's history. The Cubs lost the game by a score of 11–2.

Mert Hackett

Mortimer Martin "Mert" Hackett (November 11, 1859 – February 22, 1938), was an American Major League Baseball player from Cambridge, Massachusetts, who played mainly as a catcher from 1883 to 1887 for three different teams; the Boston Beaneaters, Kansas City Cowboys, and Indianapolis Hoosiers. His brother, Walter Hackett, and cousins John Clarkson, Walter Clarkson, and Dad Clarkson as well as Tim Keefe and Joe Kelley (all born in Cambridge, Massachusetts) also played in the majors.Hackett died in his hometown of Cambridge at the age of 78, and is interred at St. Paul Cemetery. His brother, Walter, named one of his sons Mortimer Martin Hackett after him.

Sierra Leone Company

The Sierra Leone Company was the corporate body involved in founding the second British colony in Africa on 11 March 1792 through the resettlement of Black Loyalists who had initially been settled in Nova Scotia (the Nova Scotian Settlers) after the American Revolutionary War. The company came about because of the work of the ardent abolitionists, Granville Sharp, Thomas Clarkson, Henry Thornton, and Thomas's brother, John Clarkson, who is considered one of the founding fathers of Sierra Leone. The Company was the successor to the St. George Bay Company, a corporate body established in 1790 that re-established Granville Town in 1791 for the 60 remaining Old Settlers.

Preceded by
Sam Kimber
No-hitter pitcher
July 27, 1885
Succeeded by
Charles Ferguson
Preceded by
Tim Keefe
National League Pitching Triple Crown
Succeeded by
Amos Rusie

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