The Unluckiest Pitching Staff Ever Assembled
“Big Ed” Walsh, HOF right-hander for the Chicago White Sox, was an ornery sort. He wasn’t the type of guy who went in for small talk. If he had a problem with you, you knew it – and you didn’t want a problem with Big Ed. He intimidated opponents and teammates alike (he once threatened to kill his third baseman for misplaying a bunt – and his third baseman didn’t think Walsh was speaking figuratively).
He was also tougher than glove leather. Joe McGinnity, a stalwart contemporary, might have been known as the “Iron Man” – but Walsh was at least his equal in terms of endurance. In 1908, Walsh started a third of Chicago’s games, winning 40 and pitching 464 innings.
Big Ed was even better in 1910, leading the league in ERA (1.27), adjusted ERA (189), WHIP (0.820), SO/W (4.23), and saves (only five, but still). He fashioned seven shutouts, racked up 369.2 innings and generated 10.9 pWAR. For his efforts, he was rewarded with an 18-20 record, leading the league in losses (and, one assumes, withering glares at one’s teammates).