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630 voters

The Greatest Hitting Pitchers in Baseball History

Updated May 19, 2020 3.7k votes 630 voters 15.6k views32 items

List RulesWhether they knocked record home runs or led in OPS, who are best hitting pitchers in MLB history?

Going down as one of the greatest hitting pitchers in baseball history is a difficult feat, especially when you consider a majority of these star pitchers are only batting every 5 games—at most. Now known as "pitchers who rake", these aces aren't just winning games for their teams with strikeouts and dominant pitching in general; they're stepping up to the plate, getting on base, and scoring runs. Of all the MLB's top hitting pitchers, both old and new, who do you think is the best of all time?

Now, there have been some great hitting pitchers since the early days of professional baseball, but it wasn't until 1980 when the Silver Slugger started being awarded and they really started to get recognized for such an uncommon skill. From early winners like Bob Forsch and Rick Rhoden to modern-day baseball's Madison Bumgarner and Carlos Zambrano, these are certainly pitchers who rake. Of course, we can't forget some of the earliest sluggers of the mound, such as Sloppy Thurston, Jack Scott, and Don Larsen, among many others. Another thing to consider here is these aren't just your average pitchers who can swing the bat—many of them are even the MLB's greatest pitchers.

Take a look at the list of greatest hitting pitchers below and vote up your choices for the best of all time—whether you think that comes down to batting average, home runs, or OPS. Feel free to add others to the list as well.

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  • 1
    296
    54

    Babe Ruth

    Boston Red Sox, Boston Braves

    Career batting stats: .342 avg., 714 HRs, 2,214 RBIs

    George Herman "Babe" Ruth Jr. (February 6, 1895 – August 16, 1948) was an American...  more

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    #34 of 39 Longest Hitting Streaks in Baseball#1 of 149 The Greatest New York Yankees Of All Time

  • 2
    119
    34

    Wes Ferrell

    Boston Red Sox, Boston Braves

    Career batting stats: .280 avg., 38 HRs, 208 RBIs

    Wesley Cheek "Wes" Ferrell (February 2, 1908 – December 9, 1976) was an American professional...  more

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    #79 of 146 The Best Boston Red Sox Of All Time#229 of 511 The Best Baseball Players NOT in the Hall of Fame

  • 3
    188
    106

    Shohei Ohtani

    Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

    Career batting stats: .292 avg., 36 HRs, 101 RBIs

    Shohei Ohtani (born July 5, 1994) is a Japanese professional baseball pitcher and designated...  more
  • 4
    134
    69

    Carlos Zambrano

    Chicago Cubs

    Career batting stats: .238 avg., 24 HRs, 71 RBIs

    Carlos Alberto Zambrano Matos (born June 1, 1981), nicknamed "Big Z" or "El Toro", is a...  more
  • 5
    128
    65

    Mike Hampton

    Atlanta Braves, Colorado Rockies

    Career batting stats: .246 avg., 16 HRs, 79 RBIs

    Michael William Hampton (born September 9, 1972) is an American former professional baseball...  more
  • 6
    77
    26

    Don Larsen

    Houston colt .45s, Kansas City Athletics

    Career batting stats: .242 avg., 14 HRs, 72 RBIs

    Don James Larsen (August 7, 1929 - January 1, 2020) was an American retired Major League...  more

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  • 7
    94
    41

    Ken Brett

    Milwaukee Brewers, Philadelphia Phillies

    Career batting stats: .262 avg., 10 HRs, 44 RBIs

    Kenneth Alven Brett (September 18, 1948 – November 18, 2003) was an American Major League...  more
  • 8
    90
    39

    Don Drysdale

    Los Angeles Dodgers, Brooklyn Dodgers

    Career batting stats: .186 avg., 29 HRs, 113 RBIs

    Donald Scott Drysdale (July 23, 1936 – July 3, 1993) was an American professional baseball...  more

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    #5 of 25 Longest Pitching Streaks in Baseball #133 of 255 The Best Players in the Baseball Hall of Fame

  • 9
    169
    114

    Madison Bumgarner

    Arizona Diamondbacks

    Career batting stats: .179 avg., 18 HRs, 61 RBIs

    Madison Kyle Bumgarner (born August 1, 1989), commonly known by his nickname, "MadBum", is an...  more

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    #24 of 118 The Greatest Left Handed Pitchers of All Time#191 of 316 The Greatest Left Handed Baseball Players of All Time

  • 10
    106
    59

    Zack Greinke

    Houston Astros

    Career batting stats: .222 avg., 9 HRs, 32 RBIs

    Donald Zackary Greinke (born October 21, 1983) is an American professional baseball pitcher...  more

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    #177 of 582 The Greatest Baseball Players Of All Time#104 of 197 The Greatest Pitchers of All Time

  • 11
    77
    35

    Dontrelle Willis

    Detroit Tigers, Miami Marlins

    Career batting stats: .244 avg., 9 HRs, 39 RBIs

    Dontrelle Wayne Willis (born January 12, 1982), nicknamed "The D-Train", is an American former...  more
  • 12
    63
    31

    Rick Rhoden

    Los Angeles Dodgers, Pittsburgh Pirates

    Career batting stats: .238 avg., 9 HRs, 75 RBIs

    Richard Alan Rhoden (born May 16, 1953) is a professional golfer and was a Major League...  more
  • 13
    74
    42

    Michael Lorenzen

    Career batting stats: .253 avg., 6 HRs, 20 RBIs

    Michael Clifton Lorenzen is an American professional baseball pitcher in the Cincinnati Reds...  more
  • 14
    82
    50

    Adam Wainwright

    St. Louis Cardinals

    Career batting stats: .200 avg., 10 HRs, 70 RBIs

    Adam Parrish Wainwright (born August 30, 1981) is an American professional baseball pitcher...  more

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    #160 of 196 The Top Current Baseball Players#33 of 278 The Best Starting Pitchers of All Time

  • 15
    47
    16

    Sloppy Thurston

    Chicago White Sox, St. Louis Browns

    Career batting stats: .270 avg., 5 HRs, 79 RBIs

    Hollis John Thurston (June 2, 1899 – September 14, 1973) was an American Major League Baseball...  more
  • 16
    58
    29

    Micah Owings

    Arizona Diamondbacks, Cincinnati Reds

    Career batting stats: .283 avg., 9 HRs, 35 RBIs

    Micah Burton Owings (born September 28, 1982) is an American former professional baseball...  more
  • 17
    50
    26

    Don Robinson

    Philadelphia Phillies, San Francisco Giants

    Career batting stats: .231 avg., 13 HRs, 69 RBIs

    Don Allen "Donnie" Robinson (born June 8, 1957), is a former Major League Baseball pitcher for...  more
  • 18
    44
    22

    Bob Forsch

    St. Louis Cardinals, Houston Astros

    Career batting stats: .213 avg., 12 HRs, 84 RBIs

    Robert Herbert Forsch (January 13, 1950 – November 3, 2011) was an American right-handed...  more
  • 19
    42
    23

    Carl Mays

    New York Giants, Boston Red Sox

    Career batting stats: .268 avg., 5 HRs, 111 RBIs

    Carl William Mays (November 12, 1891 – April 4, 1971) was a right-handed pitcher in Major...  more
  • 20
    32
    20

    Claude Hendrix

    Chicago Cubs, Chicago Whales

    Career batting stats: .241 avg., 14 HRs, 97 RBIs

    Claude Raymond Hendrix (April 13, 1889 – March 22, 1944) born in Olathe, Kansas, USA, is a...  more
  • 21
    32
    21

    Jack Scott

    Philadelphia Phillies, New York Giants

    Career batting stats: .275 avg., 5 HRs, 73 RBIs

    John William Scott (April 18, 1892 – November 30, 1959) was an American professional baseball...  more
  • 22
    26
    17

    Les Sweetland

    Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago Cubs

    Career batting stats: .272 avg., 0 HRs, 34 RBIs

    Lester Leo Sweetland (August 15, 1901 – March 4, 1974) was a professional baseball pitcher in...  more
  • 23
    32
    28

    Yovani Gallardo

    Milwaukee Brewers

    Career batting stats: .201 avg., 12 HRs, 42 RBIs

    Yovani Gallardo (pronounced gah-YAR-doh) (born February 27, 1986) is a Mexican professional...  more
  • 24
    67
    76

    Tom Glavine

    Atlanta Braves, New York Mets

    Career batting stats: .186 avg., 1 HR, 90 RBIs

    Thomas Michael Glavine (born March 25, 1966) is an American retired professional baseball...  more

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  • 25
    60
    72

    Noah Syndergaard

    New York Mets

    Career batting stats: .159 avg., 6 HRs, 15 RBIs

    Noah Seth Syndergaard (born August 29, 1992), nicknamed Thor, is an American professional...  more