Sunday, August 1, 2021


On the blog today we move on to the American League Earned Run Average leaders for 1972, featuring three big time pitchers, two Hall of Famers and someone who arguably should be in:

Starting off, we begin with a pitcher who made quite a comeback, resurrecting his Big League career in 1972, Luis Taint, who led the league with a brilliant 1.91 ERA in his first full season with the Boston Red Sox.
After going 21-9 with a league leading 1.60 ERA in 1968 while with the Cleveland Indians, Taint's career took a nosedive, losing 20 games in 1969, appearing in only 18 games in 1970 with the Minnesota Twins, then going 1-7 with a 4.83 ERA in Boston.
However, in 1972 he was back on top, going 15-6, tossing six shutouts and saving three over 43 appearances, 19 of which were starts.
He'd go on to win 20+ games in three of his next four seasons, eventually retiring after the 1982 season with 229 wins, 49 shutouts and a 3.30 ERA.
Just behind him in the ERA chase was Hall of Fame pitcher Gaylord Perry, who had his first Cy Young season in 1972, coming over to the Cleveland Indians after the big trade for Sam McDowell, and Perry would not disappoint, going 24-16 over 41 games, throwing a monster 342.2 innings and sporting a 1.92 ERA,with five shutouts and 234 strikeouts.
Six years later, when many thought he was "done", he'd win his second Cy Young, now with the San Diego Padres, becoming the first pitcher to win the award in both leagues, going 21-6 with a 2.73 ERA over 37 starts at the age of 39. Not too shabby!
Third in the league with a 2.09 ERA in 1972 was another Hall of Famer, former Oakland A's ace Jim "Catfish" Hunter, who had himself a very nice season helping the A's to the first of what would be three straight World Championships, going 21-7 with 191 strikeouts and five shutouts over 38 appearances, all but one as a starter.
It was his second of five straight 20-win seasons, as he'd finish up with 224 wins after arm troubles set in, tossing 42 shutouts and posting a career 3.26 ERA over 15 seasons, though still only 33 when he hung up the spikes.
Well there you have it, three studs who finished 1 through 3 in the league ERA category!


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