Baseball The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
25.6k votes 1.9k voters 23.2k views 284 items

List Rules Only starting pitchers. No closers or middle relievers

The best starting pitchers in baseball history have one vital quality in common: their ability to win. There are so many different ways to define a great pitcher: pitch velocity, outstanding command of their pitch locations and can have ridiculous movement on their breaking stuff. The best starting pitchers have a special quality that makes them more dominant than their contemporaries. They have the rare ability to reach back and get a key out when it's absolutely necessary.

Many baseball fans love a starting pitcher who can throw in the high-90s and even low-100s. Throughout his 27-year career, Nolan Ryan hit those high-water marks. The pitcher nicknamed the Ryan Express is widely considered one of the best power pitchers of all time alongside Bob Gibson, Pedro Martinez and a few others. On the opposite side sits pitchers like Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine from the successful Atlanta Braves teams from the '90s. These pitchers were able to make up for their lack of pitch power by having arguably the best pitch placement in baseball history.

Here is your opportunity to vote on which starting pitcher can be considered the best in baseball history.This Ultimate List will determine by your vote who can be considered the best starting pitcher of all time.

list ordered by

1
587 141
Cy Young is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1867

2
561 165
Walter Johnson is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

3
456 111
Christy Mathewson is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

4
386 116
Bob Feller is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1918

5
419 144
Steve Carlton is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

6
569 357
Sandy Koufax is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

7
362 73
Lefty Grove is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

8
565 424
Nolan Ryan is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1947

9
336 134
Jim Palmer is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1945

10
469 379
Greg Maddux is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

11
365 278
Tom Seaver is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1944

12
470 372
Randy Johnson is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

13
331 148
Warren Spahn is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

14
287 51
Grover Cleveland Alexander is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1887

15
321 91
Whitey Ford is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

16
355 319
Bob Gibson is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1935

17
254 128
Catfish Hunter is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

18
266 74
Carl Hubbell is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

19
360 324
Pedro Martínez is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

20
180 146
Gaylord Perry is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

21
234 57
Lefty Gomez is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

22
212 210
Tom Glavine is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

23
227 64
Don Drysdale is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1936

24
253 365
Roger Clemens is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

25
209 217
John Smoltz is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

26
190 53
Ed Walsh is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1881

27
212 54
Dizzy Dean is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
joe-scott added 1910

28
273 63
Babe Ruth is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1895

29
150 228
Juan Marichal is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

30
168 48
Mordecai Brown is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

31
265 276
Clayton Kershaw is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

32
148 89
Phil Niekro is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1939

33
105 189
Ron Guidry is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1950

34
99 61
Bert Blyleven is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1951

35
134 82
Orel Hershiser is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

36
174 192
Satchel Paige is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

37
64 32
Bob Lemon is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
joe-scott added 1920

38
114 94
Roy Halladay is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1977

39
86 51
Don Sutton is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1945

40
71 35
Rube Waddell is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

41
57 36
Jim Kaat is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
RobLein added 1938

42
63 50
Kid Nichols is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

43
111 156
Curt Schilling is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1966

44
95 78
Ferguson Jenkins is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1942

45
75 48
Robin Roberts is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1926

46
61 66
Mike Mussina is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1968

47
60 43
Eddie Plank is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1875

48
88 56
Justin Verlander is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
ebelkids added 1983

49
58 62
Dwight Gooden is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

50
37 26
Waite Hoyt is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1899