Jim "Catfish" Hunter A Remberance

By Joecubs
Nov. 05, 2016

Jim "Catfish" Hunter debuted in 1965 for the Kansas City A's as a 19-year old. Owner Charlie Finley thought baseball players needed flashy nicknames, and so he became "Catfish" Hunter. In his rookie season Hunter would win eight games in 20 starts for the A's.  In 1968, he would toss the first perfect game in the American League since Charlie Robertson of the Chicago White Sox in 1922 ( in the regular season. Don Larsen of the Yankees tossed a perfect game in the World Series). May 8, 1968, he would hurl a perfect game against the Minnesota Twins. 

He was part of the Oakland A's World Series champions from 1972-1974. He led the major leagues in wins in 1974 with a 25-12 won-loss mark.  He would win twenty plus games in five consecutive seasons. After ten years with the A's , he signed with the New York Yankees, where again led the major leagues in wins during the 1975 season going 23-14.

Hunter had a career record of 224-166 with an ERA of 3.26. He won 20 plus games five seasons in a row (1971-1975). He was an eight time All-Star, won the 1974 Cy Young Award winner, and 5 time World Series champion. His #27 has been retired by the Oakland A's, Arm trouble forced his early retirement from the game. Hunter was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1987. He died from ALS in 1999.