‘Rapid’ Robert Feller

Bob Feller is one of those players that shows why the book The Greatest Generation was right. He pitched his entire 18 year career for the Cleveland Indians. He amassed 266 wins and 2,581 strikeouts in his career. Those numbers could have been better, but Bob joined the Navy the day after Pearl Harbor was attacked and missed four full seasons. During his time in battle he was decorated with five campaign ribbons, and eight battle stars. When he returned from the war the next season he won 26 games and struck out 348 batters. Another amazing fact about Robert was that during his career he pitched three no-hitters and 12 one-hitters. This man was dominant. Bob’s fastball was legendary. In his day we did not have the technology that we have today, but his fastball was clocked at 98 mph at the plate. This was late in his career when he had lost some velocity already. Today’s radar readings are taken as the ball leaves the pitchers hand. He must have been nasty to face.
His #19 was retired by the Indians in 1957. He was elected in his first year of eligibility to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962 with 93.75% of the vote.
Bob has been immortalized in his home town of Van Meter, Iowa with a museum in his honor. Bob makes appearances at the museum many times a year bringing former greats with him. I have been to the museum many times, and it is definitely a step into the past.

See Feller’s career statistics at baseball-reference.com


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