Baseball The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
26.1k votes 1.9k voters 23.3k 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
607 142
Cy Young is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1867

2
577 168
Walter Johnson is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

3
472 112
Christy Mathewson is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

4
403 120
Bob Feller is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1918

5
432 146
Steve Carlton is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

6
574 374
Sandy Koufax is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

7
379 74
Lefty Grove is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

8
350 136
Jim Palmer is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1945

9
568 437
Nolan Ryan is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1947

10
473 388
Greg Maddux is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

11
369 287
Tom Seaver is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1944

12
471 386
Randy Johnson is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

13
333 158
Warren Spahn is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

14
299 52
Grover Cleveland Alexander is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1887

15
332 92
Whitey Ford is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

16
265 129
Catfish Hunter is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

17
277 75
Carl Hubbell is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

18
355 332
Bob Gibson is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1935

19
362 336
Pedro Martínez is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

20
189 150
Gaylord Perry is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

21
225 211
Tom Glavine is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

22
246 58
Lefty Gomez is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

23
222 218
John Smoltz is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

24
238 65
Don Drysdale is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1936

25
255 378
Roger Clemens is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

26
202 54
Ed Walsh is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1881

27
286 64
Babe Ruth is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1895

28
221 58
Dizzy Dean is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
joe-scott added 1910

29
179 48
Mordecai Brown is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

30
150 236
Juan Marichal is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

31
265 286
Clayton Kershaw is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

32
153 90
Phil Niekro is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1939

33
102 62
Bert Blyleven is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1951

34
105 191
Ron Guidry is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1950

35
136 82
Orel Hershiser is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

36
69 32
Bob Lemon is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
joe-scott added 1920

37
174 196
Satchel Paige is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

38
90 51
Don Sutton is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
1945

39
114 97
Roy Halladay is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1977

40
75 35
Rube Waddell is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

41
66 50
Kid Nichols is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

42
57 36
Jim Kaat is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
RobLein added 1938

43
112 158
Curt Schilling is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1966

44
75 48
Robin Roberts is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1926

45
95 79
Ferguson Jenkins is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1942

46
60 43
Eddie Plank is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1875

47
61 67
Mike Mussina is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
slaft added 1968

48
88 57
Justin Verlander is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time
ebelkids added 1983

49
59 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