Roy Halladay, Bob Gibson and the Top 5 MLB Pitchers from Each Decade

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Roy Halladay, Bob Gibson and the Top 5 MLB Pitchers from Each Decade
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Pedro Martinez In 1999; The Greatest Season In Modern Baseball History

The best part about this analysis is that as baseball advanced from 1900 into the 2000s, the methods of evaluation consistently changed.

In the early part of the 20th century, starting pitchers were expected to complete games and pitched 300 innings with regularity. Towards the 1950s or so, the innings were still inordinately high as compared to today’s game, but the number dropped to around 270 innings per pitcher.

By the end of the century, with advances in science and medical procedures, a pitcher is now revered if he can consistently throw 200 innings.

Furthermore, there were new statistical measurements that evolved as the game matured. The Cy Young was invented in 1956, and the WAR statistic first started being measured in 1973.

With each change in the way pitchers were used and how their importance was measured, my analysis adjusted as well. The first year in my analysis was 1901, so each decade’s analysis takes into account years in this fashion: 1901-1910.

With that, here are the top-five pitchers from each decade starting in 1900 and ending in 2011.  

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