Top 5 – Lowest Career ERAs
By Nick Browne
A team can’t win if they can’t score on the opposing pitcher. When a pitcher really has it going and is in the zone, they can be impossible to beat. Having a low ERA over one season is impressive enough, but having the lowest over an entire career? That’s impressive. These five pitchers have the lowest career ERAs.
Ed Walsh – 1.81 ERA
Walsh played for the White Sox and Braves from 1904-1917. He has held the record for best career ERA for nearly 100 years, a truly impressive feat.
Addie Joss – 1.88 ERA
In his eight-year playing career, Joss twice lead MLB in ERA, pitched a perfect game on October 2, 1908, and also tossed two no-hitters.
Jim Devlin – 1.89 ERA
Devlin only played from 1886 to 1889, pitching for the New York Giants, Philadelphia Quakers, and St. Louis Browns. He died at the young age of 34.
Jack Pfiester – 2.02 ERA
Pfiester started his career by finishing with a 1.51 ERA in his rookie season of 1906, and a 1.15 ERA the next season in 1907. His 2.02 ERA is third-lowest among pitchers with 1,000-plus innings pitched.
Smoky Joe Wood – 2.03 ERA
Smoky Joe played 14 years in MLB, playing for the Red Sox and Indians. He was a three-time World Series champion, led MLB in wins in 1912, and was the AL ERA leader in 1915.