Other incredible-season performances follow.
Fifty years ago, Sandy Koufax went 25-5. Facing Koufax in the World Series, Yogi Berra quipped, “I can see how he won twenty five. What I can’t understand is how he lost five.” Yogi’s long-time Yankees battery-mate, Whitey Ford, was 25-4 in 1961, and Ron Guidry went 25-3 in his greatest season, 1978. In 1968, Denny McLain was 31-6 for the same club Scherzer pitches.
Perhaps no two-year dominance will equal Lefty Grove’s. In 1931, Grove was 31-4. In 1930, his won-loss record was 28-5. Grove won fifty-nine of sixty-eight decisions over two seasons in a decade better known for batting records.
In 1904, Jack Chesbro may have lost twelve games; but this was out of fifty-three decisions. His forty-one victories is almost as astounding as his forty-eight complete games, a mark no current starting pitcher will achieve over a career.