June 25, 2021

The Baseball 100: No. 82, Kid Nichols (The Athletic)


Starting in December and ending on Opening Day, we at The Athletic will count down the 100 greatest baseball players by publishing an essay on a player every day for 100 days. In all, this project will contain roughly as many words as “Moby Dick.” Yes, we know it’s nutty. We hope you enjoy.

It’s always fun to play the “guess the pitcher” game. So here we go: Here are the first 10 seasons of two pitchers, both right-handed, born about 18 months apart. They started their careers in the same year.

One of the pitchers is infinitely more famous than the other.

Pitcher A: 267–151, 3.05 ERA, 1,125 Ks, 768 walks, 28 shutouts, 1.242 WHIP, 139 ERA+.

Pitcher B: 297–151, 2.97 ERA, 1,484 Ks, 1,001 walks, 36 shutouts, 1.234 WHIP, 146 ERA+.

Both were obviously extraordinary pitchers. But which one was better? You’d have to say it was Player B, right? I mean, more wins, lower ERA, lower ERA+, more shutouts, more…

Read “The Baseball 100: No. 82, Kid Nichols” at The Athletic