MATHEWSON, CHRISTOPHER (CHRISTY) (1880-1925)

Hall-of-Fame pitcher for the NEW YORK GIANTS from 1900 to 1916 under legendary manager JOHN J. McGRAW, Mathewson ranks among the greatest hurlers of all time. Nicknamed “Big Six” after New York’s best-known fire engine, he was noted for his “fadeaway” (screwball) pitch and superb control. He won 373 games and lost only 188, with a lifetime earned run average of 2.13, fifth best ever, and threw 80 shutouts, including three against Philadelphia in the 1905 World Series. Mathewson won 20 or more games in 12 consecutive seasons, and 30 or more four times. McGraw treated him like a son, and they shared the limelight of New York sports despite the sharp contrast between the pitcher’s clean, almost saintly image — handsome, religious, college-bred — and the manager’s ruthless one.

BIBLIOGRAPHY:
Thorn, J., and Palmer, P., Total Baseball. Warner Books, 1989.
Seymour, H. Baseball: The Early Years. Oxford U. Press, 1960.
Seymour, H. Baseball: The Golden Age. Oxford U. Press, 1971.
The National Pastime: A Review of Baseball History. Special Issue:
“Baseball in the Dead Ball Era.” Society for American Baseball Research, 1986.
Alexander, Charles C., John McGraw. Viking, 1988.