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Warren Spahn
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Baseball Player
    (April 23, 1921-November 24, 2003)
    Died in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma
    Played for Boston Braves (1942, 1946-1952), Milwaukee Braves (1953-1964), New York Mets (1965), and San Francisco Giants (1965)
    Batted and threw left
    Fourteen-time National League All-Star (1947, 1949-1954, 1956-1959, 1961-1963)
    Member of 1957 World Series champions Braves and 1948 and 1958 National League champions Braves
    Cy Young Award winner (1957)
    Finished his 21-year career with a 363-245 record, 2,583 strikeouts, 63 shutouts and a 3.08 ERA
    Elected to Baseball Hall of Fame, 1973
    He was rested to pitch Game Seven of the 1957 World Series against the New York Yankees, but he came down with the flu, so Lew Burdette filled in and pitched a 5-0 shutout for the World Series championship.
    Starting Game Six of the 1958 World Series with a chance to close out their second straight World Series championship over the Yankees, he lost 4-3, and the Yankees won the seventh game the following day to win the World Series.
    He was 13-29 in his last two seasons in the major leagues (1964-1965), then tried to hang on by pitching for two more years in the minor leagues and in Mexico before retiring in 1967.
    He turned down a contract that would have paid him 10¢ a head based on home attendance in 1953. That decision proved costly, because the Braves moved from Boston to Milwaukee prior to the start of the 1953 season and drew a then league-record attendance of more than 1.8 million that year. Had Spahn accepted that contract, he would have been paid more than $180,000, far above the $100,000 salary of baseball's highest-paid player of that time, Ted Williams.
    He is the winningest left-handed pitcher in baseball history.
    He was stylish, tough, and extremely competitive, and pitched for 24 professional seasons in an era when pitchers routinely completed games on three days' rest.
    He was a 20-game winner 13 times, including six years in a row, and led the National League in wins eight times and in complete games nine times.
    He was on the Braves' roster during spring training in 1942, but was sent down to the minors by manager Casey Stengel because he refused to brush back Brooklyn Dodgers shortstop Pee Wee Reese in an exhibition game.
    He missed the 1943, 1944, and 1945 seasons while serving in the U.S. Army in Europe during World War II.
    He was wounded at Remagen, Germany in March 1945 and received a battlefield commission as a second lieutenant in June 1945.
    Although he had pitched in four games for the Braves at the end of the 1942 season, he didn't earn his first major league victory until 1946, when he was 25 years old.
    He pitched the first of his two career no-hitters at age 39 in a 4-0 win over the Philadelphia Phillies (September 16, 1960).
    He pitched his second no-hitter five days after his 40th birthday in a 1-0 win over the San Francisco Giants (April 28, 1961).
    At age 42, he was 23-7 with a 2.60 ERA in 1963.
    He was one of baseball best-hitting pitchers, with 35 lifetime home runs, the National League record for pitchers.
    As a hitter, he had 363 hits in his career, one for each of his 363 victories.
    Three months before his death, he attended the dedication of a statue of him erected by the Braves in front of Turner Field in Atlanta.
    He was selected to Major League Baseball's All-Century Team (1999).
    The Braves retired his uniform number 21 (1965).
    After being traded to Casey Stengel's Mets in 1965, he said: 'I'm probably the only guy who worked with Stengel before and after he was a genius.'
    When he was criticized for pitching too long, Spahn said: 'I don't care what the public thinks. I'm pitching because I enjoy pitching.'
    After he retired from baseball, he had prosperous career as a successful oilman and cattle rancher in Oklahoma.

Credit: Highpointer

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