Old Hoss Radbourn

The 30 Game Winners? How About 50?

Old Hoss Radbourn

“Radbourn became so good with constant practice that he could throw the ball through a good-sized knothole in the fence.” – Frank Bancroft, former Providence manager.


What’s more exceptional than 30 game winners? Fifty game winners.

Charley “Hoss” Radbourn is one of only three pitchers to ever win 50+ games in a season. In 1884, the year that overhand pitching became legal, Radbourn tallied 59 wins for Providence of the National League.

Another Hall of Famer, John Clarkson, in 1885, chalked up 53 wins for Chicago’s NL franchise. And, Guy Hecker won 52 games for Louisville in the American Association during the 1884 campaign.

During this era, the pitching distance was 50′ from home plate.