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Wednesday, January 26, 2011
1967 Topps Steve Carlton St. Louis Cardinals Phillies Hall of Famer
Mr. Carlton signed my card on April 25, 2009 at the Moeller High School baseball card show in Cincinnati, Ohio. "Lefty" took the time to talk to me as well during the autograph and was a class gentleman. Steve was gracious enough to sign this card for me with a beautiful blue sharpie autograph. Even though he threw left handed, he signs his name with his right hand, see the picture below. Thank you Mr. Carlton.
Steve "Lefty" Carlton pitched 24 seasons in the Major Leagues from 1965 to 1988. The first 7 seasons, Steve played for the St. Louis Cardinals and then was traded to the Philadelphia Phillies in 1972. Considered one of the most lopsided trades in history; Steve became a huge star with the Phillies, winning the first of his four Cy Young Awards that same season, by winning 27 games. That total was 46% of the team's wins, which is still a major league record. Steve also pitched for the Giants, White Sox, Indians and Twins towards the end of his career.
Steve Carlton's career statistics include 329 wins versus 244 losses, a 3.22 earned run average, 4,136 strikeouts (most all-time by a left-handed pitcher when he retired), 254 complete games and 55 shutouts. He was named to the National League All-Star teams 10 times, won the Cy Young Award 4 times and won two World Series rings, 1967 with the Cardinals and 1980 with the Phillies. Carlton was elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1994 on the first ballot with 95.8% of the vote and has his number 32 retired by the Phillies. Steve was also a good hitter and was used often in a pinch hitting role. He hit 13 home runs and drove in 140 runs during his career while batting .201. A dubious record that Steve Carlton also owns is the record for career balks with 90, which is double his next closest pitcher, Bob Welch. On the postive side, Steve owns the record with 144 pick-offs by a pitcher, which is 62 more than the closest person, Jerry Koosman.
To learn more about Steve Carlton, read his biography at http://www.carlton32.com/pages/bio.html
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