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Sunday, June 03, 2012
So long as he didn’t have to pitch against The Only Nolan. That might pose a severe Crisis/Infinite Earths problem.
Era he might have thrived in: The story of Ryan’s rise to greatness is well-told, detailing how he debuted as a wild young reliever with the New York Mets in 1967 before being traded to the Angels in December 1971 and finding command enough to become an ace (though he led his league in walks eight times.) So there are two options: Find Ryan a similar formative environment; or, place him in a free-swinging era where batters walked far less, where the few Hall of Fame pitchers were either fireballers or on great teams or both. I’m speaking of the 1930s. Playing then, on a ball club like the New York Giants, Ryan may have excelled.
Why: The Giants ballpark, the Polo Grounds was the Astrodome of its era, center field a place where home runs went to die. Pitching there, Ryan could make a more-than competent sidekick to Carl Hubbell, and with the ’30s Giants, he’d have the elite caliber of club he rarely found himself on in 27 seasons, a chance to go the World Series in his prime. And if his power translated to the era, Ryan could bring unprecedented strikeout totals, perhaps breaking the dry spell between 1912 and 1946 where no hurler had 300 K’s. Ryan could be the Bob Feller of the National League.
Posted: June 03, 2012 at 08:28 AM | 29 comment(s)
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