Playing in Wrigley Field, the Chicago Cubs have never been known for great pitching. However, a number of outstanding pitchers have taken the mound for the Cubs. In fact, many of Chicago's best pitchers have been left-handers who excelled at keeping the ball down.
In honor of National Left Handers Day on August 13, take a look back at the top five left-handed pitchers in Chicago Cubs' history.
5. Jake Weimer (1903-05)
Jake Weimer was one left-handed pitcher who never had to deal with the wind blowing out in Wrigley Field. Although he only played in Chicago three seasons, Weimer made the most of his opportunity. As a Cub, Weimer was 58-34 with a 2.14 ERA and 84 CGs. In his rookie season, the Cub left-hander led the NL in fewest hits per nine innings.
4. Jack Pfiester (1906-11)
"Jack the Giant Killer" was an appropriate nickname for this 5'11" 180 lb. left-handed pitcher. Pfiester posted a 70-40 record and a 1.85 ERA in Chicago. In 1907, he led the NL with a 1.15 ERA. I know this sounds crazy today, but the diminutive lefty pitched in four different World Series for Chicago, including a CG win in 1907.
3. Dick Ellsworth (1958, 60-66)
I'm going to get back on my soapbox now and preach once again that the most meaningless stat in all of baseball is a pitcher's W-L record. Chicago's longtime left-handed pitcher Dick Ellsworth was a victim of atrocious teams and little run support. His 3.70 Cub ERA was a more accurate reflection of the left-hander's talent than his 84-110 record.
2. Randy Myers (1993-95)
Randy Myers was already an outstanding left-handed relief pitcher when he came to Chicago in 1993. However, he posted the greatest season of his illustrious career for the Cubs. In 1993, Myers set an NL record with 53 saves. In only three years with the Cubs, Myers accumulated 122 saves and was a two-time All-Star.
1. Hippo Vaughn (1913-21)
In his era, James Leslie Vaughn must have looked like a hippo on the mound. The 6'4" 215 lb. left-handed pitcher intimidated batters to the tune of a 151-105 record and 2.33 ERA with Chicago. In the 1918 World Series, he had a 1.00 ERA in three starts. Hippo Vaughn is the Chicago Cubs' career leader in wins among left-handed pitchers.
Honorable mention left-handed Chicago Cubs pitchers
Larry French, Willie Hernandez, Ted Lilly, Steve Trout, Lefty Tyler, Mitch Williams
Patrick Michael is a resident of New Orleans, but grew up watching the Chicago Cubs on WGN with Harry Caray and Steve Stone as the announcers. A diehard Cubs fan, Patrick's favorite season was 1984 when the Chicago Cubs were one win away from reaching the World Series. Follow Patrick Michael on Twitter at patmichael84.
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