In the previous article I had mentioned that Frank Killen had two 30 win seasons with the Pirates, and was also the last pitcher to accomplish that feat while with the Pirates. Since they moved to the National League in 1887, they have actually only had one other thirty win season. The 30 win plateau was actually easier to reach the first twenty years of baseball because teams expected a starting pitcher to start every game and if they couldn't they would find someone else to fill his job. When major league baseball first started in 1871 there was no such thing as a pitching rotation, owners back then didn't want to pay to have more players on the payroll so most teams had ten guys on their roster, the starting nine and then someone who would fill in if a player got injured. Once teams began to realize the advantage of giving pitchers rests the everyday pitcher disappeared and individual win totals declined.
Before joining the National League, Pittsburgh only had one ...
John was born in Kearny, NJ, hometown of the 2B for the Pirates 1909 World Championship team, Dots Miller. In fact they have some of the same relatives in common, so it was only natural for him to become a lifelong Pirates fan. Before joining Pirates Prospects in July 2010, John had written numerous articles on the history of baseball while also releasing his own book and co-authoring another on the history of the game. He writes a weekly article on Pirates history for the site, has already interviewed many of the current minor leaguers with many more on the way and follows the foreign minor league teams very closely for the site. John also provides in person game reports of the West Virginia Power and Altoona Curve.