You know who the best MLB athlete to ever wear the number 42 is. You also know that Jackie Robinson probably could have played pro football if he wanted to. Instead, he broke the color line in Major League Baseball. He is the best athlete ever to wear the number 42. Hands down. Check out my post on why he's the best number 42 athlete of all time.
Not only the best MLB athlete, but the best Professional athlete to ever wear the jersey number 41 is Tom Seaver.
Seaver, who spent most of his career with the New York Mets, is generally considered one of the best starting pitchers to ever take to an MLB mound. He began his major league career with the statistics to support his expectation as a pitching phenom. During his rookie season he racked up 16 wins, 170 strikeouts in 251 innings pitched, and a 2.76 ERA to go with 2 shutouts. Not too bad for a rookie, huh?
He only followed that rookie season with one in which he again won 16 games but this time with a 2.20 ERA, 5 shutouts and 205 strikeouts in 277.2 innings pitched.
Seaver would continue to keep a miniscule ERA each season while racking up the strikeouts and wins. His highest season win total was 25 games in 1969 (the year the Mets first won it all), best season ERA was in 1971 when he had a tiny 1.76 ERA, and his best season for strikeouts was again in 1971 when he racked up 289.
For his career, he put up the following numbers:
- 311 wins
- 2.86 ERA
- 3,640 strikeouts
- 61 shutouts
- 1 World Series championship
- 1 Save
- He wore the jersey number 41 for his entire career with the Mets, Reds, White Sox and Red Sox.
Did you know.......that Seaver's number 41 has been retired by the Mets?
- 352 career saves through 2008 season
- 3.12 career ERA through 2008 season
- 774 strikeouts in 697.1 innings pitched
- 42 save season in 1998 with the Angels
- 3 World Series saves in 3 games and 3 innings pitched
Did you know.....Percival is currently 8th on the all-time career save leaders list?
Campy would go on to prove himself not only worthy of major league level play, but of Hall of Fame honor, being inducted into the Hall in 1969.
Playing for the Dodgers between the years of 1948 and 1957, Campanella put up some big numbers.
- 242 career home runs
- .276 career batting average
- 856 career RBI
- 3-time NL MVP (1951, 1953 and 1955)
- 8-time All Star
Campanella's career was cut short by an automobile accident, otherwise his numbers and accolades would have been even greater.
Did you know.........Roy Campanella's jersey number 39 has been retired by the Dodgers?
- 3,116 strikeouts
- 216 wins
- 3 World Series Championships
- 1 World Series MVP
- 20 shutouts
- 11 post-season wins and 4 World Series wins
- #1 Win-Loss percentage in the A.L. in 2004
- Twice the N.L. Strikeout Leader (1997, 1998)
Did you know.....that Schilling ended his MLB career with the Red Sox, started his MLB career with the Orioles, but was initially drafted by the Red Sox in the 1986 amateur draft?