One of the more intimidating pitchers of his time, Burleigh Grimes was one of 17 pitchers allowed to continue throwing the spitball when it was outlawed in 1920. He was nicknamed “Ol’ Stubblebeard” because of his habit of not shaving on his pitching day due to the fact that the slippery elm that he used to load the ball irritated his face. He was also known around the National League to be more than willing to throw the brush back pitch, and was one of the few pitchers of his time that threw a slider. The righthander pitched for 19 seasons with a number of teams, but had his greatest success with the Brooklyn Dodgers, Pittsburgh Pirates and St. Louis Cardinals. He also spent time with the New York Giants, Boston Braves, Chicago Cubs and New York Yankees. He won 20 or more games 5 times, lead NL pitchers in wins twice, appeared in 4 World Series and he was a valuable member of the Redbirds’ 1931 World Championship team. He finished his career with a 270-212 record. He retired in 1934 as the last of the legal spitballers, and was elected to Cooperstown by the Veteran’s Committee in 1964.
August 18, 2014
Clear Lake, WI