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Lefty Grove

Pitcher
Born: March 6, 1900(1900-03-06)
Lonaconing, Maryland
Died: May 22, 1975 (aged 75)
Norwalk, Ohio
Batted: Left Threw: Left 
MLB debut
April 14, 1925 for the Philadelphia Athletics
Last MLB appearance
September 28, 1941 for the Boston Red Sox
Career statistics
Win-Loss record     300-141
Earned run average     3.06
Strikeouts     2,266
Teams
Career highlights and awards
Member of the National
Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Baseball Hall of Fame Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg
Induction     1947
Vote     76.4% (third ballot)

Robert Moses "Lefty" Grove (March 6, 1900 – May 22, 1975) was a pitcher in Major League Baseball. Born in Lonaconing, Maryland, Grove was a sandlot star in the Baltimore area during the 1910s. His performance attracted the attention of Jack Dunn, the owner of the minor league Baltimore Orioles, who also discovered Babe Ruth.

Grove joined the Orioles in 1920, and broke into the team's pitching rotation at midseason with a 12-2 record. Over the next four seasons, he posted marks of 25-10, 18-8, 27-10 and 27-6, leading the International League in strikeouts each season.

Grove remained in the minor leagues through 1924 because Dunn, who ran an independent operation with no major-league affiliation, refused several offers from the majors to acquire him. Finally, early in 1925, Dunn agreed to sell Grove's rights to the Philadelphia Athletics for $100,500, the highest amount ever paid for a player at the time.

He battled injuries as a rookie and posted a 10-13 mark, which would prove his only losing record in seventeen seasons, despite leading the league in strikeouts. Grove then settled down in 1926 and won the first of a record nine earned run average (ERA) titles with a mark of 2.51. In 1927, Grove won 20 games for the first time and a year later he led the league in wins with 24.

In 1928, Grove twice struck out the side on nine pitches. On August 23, he did it in the second inning of a 3-1 win over the Cleveland Indians to become the third American League pitcher and seventh pitcher in major league history to accomplish the feat. On September 27, he did it in the seventh inning of a 5-3 win over the Chicago White Sox, becoming the first pitcher in major league history to accomplish the feat twice in a career; since then, only Sandy Koufax and Nolan Ryan, both Hall of Famers, have joined him. Grove, however, remains the only pitcher to do it twice in the same season.

The Athletics won the pennant in three successive seasons (1929 to 1931), as well as consecutive World Championships 1929 and 1930. During the Athletics' championship run, Grove led the way as the league's top pitcher, posting records of 20-6, 28-5 and 31-4. In 1930, Grove led the league in wins, ERA (2.06), strikeouts (175), winning percentage, complete games and shutouts. He was also chosen as league MVP in 1931, making him one of only a handful of pitchers to achieve this honor. His MVP Award is the only one not enshrined in Cooperstown, instead being housed at the Georges Creek Library in Lonaconing.

The Athletics contended for the next two seasons, but finished second to the New York Yankees in 1932 and third behind the Washington Senators and Yankees in 1933. On 12th December 1933, team owner Connie Mack traded Grove, along with Max Bishop and Rube Walberg to the Boston Red Sox for Bob Kline, Rabbit Warstler and $125,000.

Grove was unable to contribute substantially his first year, with an arm injury holding him to an 8-8 record. In 1935, however, Grove returned to form with a 20-12 record and a league-leading 2.70 ERA. Grove won his eighth ERA title a year later, and also led the league in ERA and winning percentage in 1938. Grove continued to post outstanding records, including 14-4 in 1938 and 15-4 in 1939.

Grove retired in 1941 with a career record of 300-141. His .680 lifetime winning percentage is still eighth all-time; however, none of the seven men ahead of him won more than 236 games. His lifetime ERA of 3.06, when normalized to overall league ERA and adjusted for the parks in which Grove played during his career, is second only to the still-active Pedro Martínez, at 48 percent better than average.

Grove was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1947. He died in Norwalk, Ohio and was interred in the Frostburg Memorial Cemetery in Frostburg, Maryland.

In 1999, Grove ranked number 23 on The Sporting News list of Baseball's Greatest Players. He was the second highest-ranked left-handed pitcher, after Warren Spahn. That same year, Grove was elected to the Major League Baseball All-Century Team.

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Simple English

Lefty Grove
Pitcher
Born: March 6, 1900(1900-03-06)
Lonaconing, Maryland
Died: May 22, 1975 (aged 75)
Norwalk, Ohio
Batted: Left Threw: Left 
MLB debut
April 14, 1925 for the Philadelphia Athletics
Last MLB appearance
September 28, 1941 for the Boston Red Sox
Career statistics
Win-Loss record    300-141
Earned run average    3.06
Strikeouts    2,266
Teams
Career highlights and awards
  • All-Star selection (1933, 1935, 1936, 1937, 1938, 1939)
  • World Series champion (Template:Wsy, Template:Wsy)
  • 1931 AL MVP
  • Major League Baseball All-Century Team
  • Member of the National
    Baseball Hall of Fame
    Induction    1947
    Vote    76.4% (third ballot)

    Robert Moses "Lefty" Grove (March 6, 1900 – May 22, 1975) was a pitcher in Major League Baseball.


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