Ranking the greatest pitchers in baseball history: Nos. 60-41
theScore

Throughout the month of January, a cast of editors from theScore will share their rankings of the greatest teams, performances, pitchers, and position players in baseball history. This list focuses on the greatest pitchers:

100-81 | 80-61 | 60-41 | 40-21 | 20-1

Voter list:

  • James Bisson, National Sports Editor
  • Brandon Wile, Senior MLB Editor
  • Jonah Birenbaum, MLB News Editor
  • Michael Bradburn, MLB News Editor
  • Jason Wilson, MLB News Editor
  • Bryan Mcwilliam, MLB News Editor
  • Simon Sharkey-Gotlieb, MLB News Editor
  • Dylan Perego, News Editor
  • Josh Wegman, News Editor

60. Luis Tiant

W L K ERA WHIP
229 172 2416 3.30 1.20

Armed with a funky delivery, Tiant is arguably the greatest Cuban-born pitcher to reach the majors. Though he never landed in Cooperstown, the right-hander was a force on the mound. He was a three-time All-Star and finished in the top six in Cy Young voting three times, threw over 250 innings five times, and won at least 20 games on four occasions. - Wile

59. Tim Hudson

W L K ERA WHIP
222 133 2080 3.49 1.24

The historical framing of the 2001 "Moneyball" Oakland A's conveniently omits the dominant young pitching staff. Led by a 26-year-old Tim Hudson and a pair of 24-year-olds in Barry Zito and Mark Mulder, the Athletics won 103 games that season. Of course, Hudson's tenure with Oakland was abbreviated - as all tenures in Oakland are - as he was traded to the Atlanta Braves following the 2004 campaign. It took until his 2014 season - as a 38-year-old - to finally track down his first and only World Series ring as a member of the San Francisco Giants. - Bradburn

58. Felix Hernandez

W L K ERA WHIP
160 114 2342 3.20 1.18

King Felix might be on the downside of his career, but contemporary baseball fans will never forget how truly dominant he was in his prime. Hernandez has a Cy Young award on his resume to go along with five other top-eight finishes; He's led the AL in ERA twice and struck out 200 or more batters six straight seasons. And he'll open the season at age 31, with plenty of time to build upon his 160 career victories. - Bisson

57. Mordecai Brown

W L K ERA WHIP
239 130 1375 2.06 1.07

As a young boy, Brown slipped while feeding material into his farm's feed chopper, leaving him permanently disfigured. The accident cost him most of his right index finger and rendered his middle finger crooked. It also turned him into one of the greatest pitchers who ever lived. On account of the mishap, Brown, eventually known as "Three-Finger," developed a wicked curveball - a pitch that, from 1906-1910, helped him notch five straight seasons with at least 20 wins and a sub-2.00 ERA (182 ERA+) for the Chicago Cubs. - Birenbaum

56. Dave Stieb

W L K ERA WHIP
176 137 1669 3.44 1.25

Without a doubt the first great pitcher in Toronto Blue Jays history, Stieb quickly established himself as one of the premiere workhorses in baseball to begin his career. The right-hander posted five consecutive seasons with 10 or more complete games from 1980-84 and possessed one of the most devastating sliders of his era. Had persistent back injuries not derailed his career, Stieb could very well have posted Hall of Fame-worthy numbers. - Perego

55. Whitey Ford

W L K ERA WHIP
236 106 1956 2.75 1.22

When mentioning New York Yankee greats, Ford should be included in any conversation. "The Chairman of the Board," who grew up in Queens, spent his entire 16-year career - with a military break in between - in Yankee pinstripes, winning 236 games. In 1961, Ford won 25 games to four losses over 39 starts en route to his lone Cy Young Award. He also won six World Series titles and the Yankees retired his number in 1974. - Mcwilliam

54. Roy Oswalt

W L K ERA WHIP
163 102 1852 3.36 1.21

For a decade, Oswalt was the stalwart of Houston's rotation, making three All-Star appearances and earning four top-five Cy Young finishes. He also won an ERA title in 2006 and the 2005 NLCS MVP after helping the Astros to their first-ever pennant. Later, he was a valued member of two playoff teams in Philadelphia. - Sharkey-Gotlieb

53. Pud Galvin

W L K ERA WHIP
365 310 1807 2.85 1.19

Ol' Pud Galvin hailed from an era that greatly differs from the modern version of baseball. With the Buffalo Bisons, Galvin threw at least 445 innings in six straight years, topping out at a whopping 656 1/3 in 1883 when he tossed 72 complete games in 75 starts, which is shockingly only the third highest single-season total. He was baseball's first 300-win pitcher, and is fifth all time in wins. He's also considered the first doper, having injected himself with an elixir containing monkey testosterone before a game in 1889. - Wilson

52. Ed Walsh

W L K ERA WHIP
195 126 1736 1.82 1.00

Injuries derailed Walsh's career, but during a seven-season run from 1906-1912 there were few better. The right-hander went 168-112 over that time, compiling an unthinkable 1.71 ERA and 0.97 WHIP across 2526 1/3 innings. He never finished a season with an ERA over 2.22 during those peak years, and still owns the MLB record with a career 1.82 ERA. Walsh, who won a World Series in 1906 with the White Sox and tossed a no-hitter five years later, was enshrined in Cooperstown in 1946. - Wile

51. Andy Pettitte

W L K ERA WHIP
256 153 2448 3.85 1.35

Like it or not, Pettitte is the poster child for curbing the performance-enhancing drug stigma. Pettitte, who owns the record for most postseason wins by a pitcher (19), admitted guilt and apologized for using PEDs as a recovery aid, saying he felt an obligation to return to his team as quickly as possible following injuries. It will be interesting to see how this weighs on the BBWAA voters when Pettitte - a five-time World Series champion who is often tagged as the nice guy alongside Roger Clemens' bully - becomes eligible for the Hall of Fame next winter. - Bradburn

50. Tim Keefe

W L K ERA WHIP
342 225 2564 2.63 1.12

Keefe threw a lot of baseballs in his career. Baseball's second 300-game winner, the diminutive hurler twice threw more than 500 innings in a season, with a high-water mark of 619 in 1883. He led the league in victories twice, boasted the lowest ERA on three occasions, and finished with more than 2,500 strikeouts. He was at his best in 1888, going 35-12 with a 1.74 ERA and 335 strikeouts. - Bisson

49. Dazzy Vance

W L K ERA WHIP
197 140 2045 3.24 1.23

Despite his blazing fastball, Vance didn't get a real shake in the big leagues until his 20s were over. That patience paid off. In 1922, at 31, Dance authored a 3.70 ERA over 245 2/3 innings for the Brooklyn Dodgers while leading the National League with 134 strikeouts. In each of the next six seasons, as well, Dance would lead the NL in strikeouts - he's still the only pitcher to do it seven years straight - while also earning the MVP award in 1924 and twice more receiving downballot votes for the award over that span. - Birenbaum

48. Eddie Plank

W L K ERA WHIP
326 194 2246 2.35 1.12

Plank made a name for himself as the most dominant hurler of his era. He was a consistent 20-game winner and dangerous strikeout pitcher when such a presence was uncommon. The southpaw was a key member of an impressive run by the Philadelphia Athletics that resulted in three World Series championships in 1910, 1911, and 1913. Plank remains the all-time leader in shutouts by a left-hander (66) and sits 13th all time in wins. - Perego

47. Zack Greinke

W L K ERA WHIP
172 107 2236 3.40 1.18

Imagine never seeing Zack Greinke pitch. Because that was almost a reality because of his battles with depression and anxiety. But, since learning to handle his issues, the Arizona Diamondbacks ace has been one of the best of this era. The one-time Cy Young winner (yes, he's only won the award once), posted an incredible 1.66 ERA and lost just three games in 2015, yet finished second behind Jake Arrieta as the NL's best pitcher. - Mcwilliam

46. Mariano Rivera

W L K ERA WHIP
82 60 1173 2.21 1.00

The son of a Panamanian fisherman threw but one pitch - and it was all but unhittable. Rivera rode that cut fastball to a record 652 saves and 205 ERA+, while his WHIP, the third-lowest in history, trails just two dead-ball era starters. His playoff exploits are even more legendary: a 0.70 ERA in October, 42 saves, five World Series championships, the 1999 World Series MVP, and 2003 ALCS MVP. Rivera is regarded as the greatest closer of all time, and, perhaps more importantly, as one of the game's great gentlemen off the field. - Sharkey-Gotlieb

45. Carl Hubbell

W L K ERA WHIP
253 154 1677 2.98 1.17

Hubbell won two MVP awards (1933 and 1936), but perhaps his most astonishing feat came in the 1933 World Series. The 30-year-old threw two complete games for the New York Giants, including an epic 11-inning affair in Game 4 to give them the edge. Miraculously, it wasn't even his longest outing of the year; he pitched an 18-inning shutout against the St. Louis Cardinals in July. - Wilson

44. Hal Newhouser

W L K ERA WHIP
207 150 1796 3.06 1.31

Newhouser intended to leave baseball to fight in World War II, but a heart murmur made him ineligible. Instead, he became one of the most dominant pitchers in the majors. He was an All-Star six times from 1942-1948, and became the first pitcher to win back-to-back MVP awards, just missing out on a third following a second-place finish in 1946. Despite injuries limiting him to just 321 innings in his 30s, Newhouser still ranks 58th all time in pitching WAR. - Wile

43. Bret Saberhagen

W L K ERA WHIP
167 117 1715 3.34 1.14

It didn't take long for Saberhagen to start building his case for Cooperstown, winning 20 games, posting a 2.87 ERA, and adding his first Cy Young and World Series championship to his mantle at age 21. Of course, lack of longevity famously made Saberhagen one of the best one-and-done pitchers to appear on the Hall of Fame ballot. While he never led the Royals to another Fall Classic, he added another Cy Young to his trophy case in 1989 and threw a no-hitter for Kansas City in 1991. - Bradburn

42. Jim Bunning

W L K ERA WHIP
224 184 2855 3.27 1.18

Bunning wasn't the most intimidating pitcher of his era, but he was certainly one of the most reliable - throwing more than 240 innings 10 times during an 11-year span while winning 17 or more games eight times. Bunning's 1967 season, in which he led the league in starts (40), strikeouts (253), and shutouts (six), earned him runner-up honors in the NL Cy Young voting. - Bisson

41. David Cone

W L K ERA WHIP
194 126 2668 3.46 1.26

Few pitchers boast a resume as complete as Cone's, who, over the course of his decorated, 17-year career, accomplished the following feats:

  1. Won a World Series (1992, 1996, 1998, 1999, 2000)
  2. Won a Cy Young award (1994 - American League)
  3. Earned an All-Star nomination (1988, 1992, 1994, 1997, 1999)
  4. Won 20-plus games in a season (1988, 1998)
  5. Led the majors in strikeouts (1990, 1991, 1992)
  6. Threw a perfect game (July 18, 1999)

- Birenbaum

(Photos courtesy: Getty Images)

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Ranking the greatest pitchers in baseball history: Nos. 60-41
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