Cincinnati Reds All-Time Strikeout Leaders
The Cincinnati Reds are one of baseball’s oldest, most storied franchises, and until recently have had a solid winning tradition. The Reds boasted the Big Red Machine in the ‘70’s, with amazing offensive players and pitchers. Here is a list of the team’s all-time pitching leaders in strikeouts:
Jim Maloney (1592)—Jim Maloney pitched in Cincinnati his entire career, from 1960 to 1971, and he leads the franchise all-time with 1592 strikeouts. Maloney had his best season in 1963, when he went 23-7 with a 2.77 ERA and career best 265 strikeouts.
Mario Soto (1449)—Mario Soto had absolutely nasty stuff, as I remember watching him pitch against the Mets many times when I was a kid growing up in New York. Soto pitched for the Reds his entire career, from 1977 to 1988, and he ranks second in team history with 1449 strikeouts. Soto went 18-7 in 1984, but his best overall season may have been 1982. That year, Soto won 14 and lost 13, but had a stellar 2.79 earned run average and career high 274 K’s.
Joe Nuxhall (1289)—Joe Nuxhall pitched for the Reds most of his career, from 1944 to 1960 and again from 1962 to 1966. Nuxhall ranks third in Reds’ history with 1289 strikeouts, and his best season was 1963. That year, Nuxhall went 15-8 with a career best 2.61 ERA and 169 strikeouts (also a career high).
Jose Rijo (1251)—Jose Rijo began his career with the Yankees and A’s, but pitched in Cincinnati for most of it, from 1988 to 1995, and again in 2001 and 2002. Rijo is tied for fourth all-time in franchise history with 1251 K’s, and his best season was 1993. That year, Rijo went 14-9 with a 2.48 earned run average and career high 227 strikeouts, which also led the league.
Johnny Vander Meer (1251)—Johnny Vander Meer pitched for the Reds most of his career, from 1937 to 1949 and ranks tied for fourth in the team’s history (with Rijo) with 1251 strikeouts. In 1941, Vander Meer had a career high 202 K’s, but his best overall season was 1942, with an 18-12 record and 2.43 ERA (wins and ERA career bests) and 186 strikeouts.
Paul Derringer (1062)—Paul Derringer played in Cincinnati from 1933 to 1942 and ranks sixth in Reds’ history with 1062 strikeouts. Derringer struck out 132 in 1938, his best total with the Reds, but his best overall season was 1939, when he went 25-7 with a career best 2.93 ERA and 128 K’s.
Gary Nolan (1035)—Gary Nolan was a part of those great Big Red Machine teams, and he was with the Reds most of his career, from 1967 to 1977. Nolan ranks seventh in the club’s history with 1035 strikeouts, and his best overall season may have been his rookie year, when Nolan went 14-8 with a 2.58 earned run average and career high 206 strikeouts.
Jim O’Toole (1002)—Jim O’Toole pitched for the Reds most of his career, from 1958 to 1966, and he ranks eighth in team history with 1002 strikeouts. O’Toole had his best season in 1961, with a 19-9 record (career high in wins), 3.10 ERA and career best 178 K’s.
Tom Browning (997)—Tom Browning was a great pitcher along with Soto and Rijo, or both, as he pitched for them from 1984 to 1994. Browning ranks ninth in Reds’ history with 997 strikeouts, and his best overall season was 1985. That year, Browning went 20-9 (career high in wins), with a 3.55 earned run average and career best 155 strikeouts.
Tony Mullane (993)—Tony Mullane pitched for the Reds from 1886 to 1893, and he ranks tenth in franchise history with 993 strikeouts. Mullane struck out 325 with the Toledo Blue Stockings in 1884, which was his career high, but his best season with the Reds was 1886. That year, Mullane went 36-26 with a 2.52 ERA and 250 K’s.