Steve Carlton Celebrity Life
American professional baseball player Steve Carlton was born in Miami Florida to Joe and Anne Carlton in 1944. During his teenage years, Steve showed an inclination towards Oriental philosophy and meditation. At the Miami high school, he played baseball and also tried his luck as a hoopster and was not especially good at his academics. Later on, he decided to focus on his baseball pitching skills during high school. He then went on to play baseball in college and it was then that he signed up for the St. Louis Cardinals, a pro-baseball team for $5,000.
Carlton’s rapid development in his pitching skills, as he pitched for 4 teams in 1964 resulted in his rapid progression via the Minor League and was soon promoted to the major league team.
A career starts
After making his debut with the Cardinals when he was 20 he became a regular in their rotational roster. The 6.4 ft Carlton had an intimidating presence and was known for his sliders and hard fastballs. His performances helped his side reach the World Series in 1997 and 1998.
He made a strong comeback in 1971 getting 20-9 coupled with a 3.56 ERA, and this went on to be the first of his twenty win seasons.
Rising with the Phillies
Following another dispute over his compensation Steve finally went over to the Philadelphia Phillies. Steve was 77-62 with a 3.10 ERA in 190 games and his performance led to him being selected for the NL All-Star team in 1968, 1969 and 1971.
In his stint with the Philadelphia Phillies he led the league in wins (27), complete games (30), strikeouts (310) and ERA 1.97 and his performance earned him the Cy Young Award and he was also the proud winner of the Hickok Belt. To top it all his winning percentage of 47% set a record in the history of the modern league. Steve’s 1972 season ended with 10 losses but an outstanding 27 wins which he considers his finest individual achievement.
When he experienced a loss in the form in 1973 ending on 13-20 and a 3.90 ERA, his training techniques were questioned and he severed all ties with the media refusing to answer any questions till his term with the Phillies. Carlton, however, enjoyed a flourishing career with the Phillies winning 4 Cy Young Awards.
Along with his individual performances, the team’s performance also improved significantly and the Phillies won the National League East Division for 3 years in succession and also helped them win the 1980 World Series. He bagged a Gold Glove Award in 1981 for his fielding. In first, he scored a home run with a complete-game shutout in a game.
Between 1982-84 Carlton was competing with fellow pitchers Nolan Ryan and Gaylord Perry and they were running neck-to-neck in their effort to top the 55-year old record of 3508 strikeouts set by Walter Johnson. Ryan was the first to break the record but Carlton went ahead later to end with 3526 to Ryan’s 3524. An injury laid him low in 1985 and a worse season followed in 1986 and he was finally released by the Phillies to join the San Francisco Giants.
Life after the Phillies
He bagged his 4000th career strikeout, only the second pitcher to do and shortly after announced his retirement in August 1986. He came out of retirement soon after since he had not submitted a letter of retirement to the National League and joined Chicago White Sox in August 1986 for the rest of the season. After shorts stints with the Cleveland Indians and the Minnesota Twins, he remained unsigned in 1989 and he retired at the age of 44. He was also a very capable hitter for a pitcher hitting .201 with 13 home runs 123 runs and 140 RBI in 1710 career at-bats.
On the personal front
Carlton was married to Beverly for 33 years and they have 2 sons. He has been accused of bigotry and Semitism and also holds many controversial social and political views. He has appeared in an episode of the American sitcom Married…with Children, playing himself. But he maintains he was brought into the earth to teach the world how to throw a slider.
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