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(Editor"s note: This story initially ran for Colon"s 45th birthday, however two years later, Bartolo is still remarkable us all)
1. That pitched in the majors in ~ 45! You deserve to probably guess that it"s pretty inexplicable for a 45-year-old to be pitching in the majors. Colon came to be just the 16th MLB pitcher due to the fact that 1900 period 45 or older. Just how old is he? Gleyber Torres that the Yankees homered twice off that in 2018. Torres to be 3 month old as soon as Colon do his major league debut in 1997.
2. Colon has actually 247 wins. That"s a lot of wins! the puts him 50th on the all-time list. He passed Juan Marichal for the many by a Dominican pitcher and also Dennis Martinez for the many by a Latin American pitcher.Editor"s Picks
3. He didn"t play arranged baseball until he was 14. In a 2015 profile in the brand-new York Times, Colon said he learned his work-related ethic native his pet donkey, Pancho, who he supplied to ride come the baseball field. Colon later developed a training complex for young football player in his hometown that El Copey and memorialized Pancho v an illustration top top a wall of the complex.
4. Colon signed v the ind in 1993 for $3,000 -- just after he to be sent home three times after tryouts v the Indians and told the was too short. The Dodgers and Royals told the the same thing. (So states one profile of Colon; others do no point out of the initial rejections.) once he very first signed, the indians insisted Colon to be 18, not 20. His real age was exposed in 2002.
5. Through his blazing fastball, Colon rose quickly through the minors, and also Baseball America ranked him as the No. 14 prospect heading into his rookie season in 1997. He was squeezed between Scott Rolen (final significant league season: 2012) and Derrek Lee (final season: 2011) and was the fourth-best pitching prospect. Ahead of him: Kerry wood (No. 3), Matt White (No. 4) and Kris Benson (No. 8).
6. The residence run:
7. "Anytime I see a fastball i swing hard since I"m no a curveball hitter." -- Colon ~ hitting his residence run off the Padres" James Shields in 2016
8. "We all type of said, "What would we do if Bartolo struggle a home run?" the made everyone"s career to evil that." -- Mets 2nd baseman Neil Walker
9. It took 19 seasons prior to Colon linked for that house run. It was entertaining no just since it was a robust human being being smashing a leather round over a fence but additionally because Colon is among the worst hitters in significant league history, through an .085 job average, 163 strikeouts and one go (shame ~ above you, Robbie Ray). The house run was totally unexpected, and also that made it even much more wonderful.
10. The player v the most residence runs off Bartolo: Alex Rodriguez, with eight. That hit .411 and slugged 1.000 against Colon.
11. The player Colon faced the most: Ichiro Suzuki. In 118 key appearances, Ichiro hit .299 v three home runs.
12. The best of those hits came in video game 4 the the 2001 division series. V the Indians leading the collection and the score bound 1-1 in the seventh, Ichiro"s two-out single gave the Mariners a 2-1 lead. Seattle won that game and also took video game 5 as well.
13. Of course, us joke around Colon"s weight. However check the end a reasonably skinny Bartolo indigenous his an initial career shutout in 1998:
14. His weight, however, ended up being a problem early in his career. As soon as he signed a four-year extension with the indians in 1999, the club consisted of an motivation clause providing him $12,500 each time he sweet 225 pounds or less during four weigh-ins every season.
15. Once Colon signed with the Angels in 2004, a Los Angeles times writer inquiry his previous GM in Cleveland around Colon"s work-related ethic. "Among his strengths room his psychological consistency, his capacity to it is in poised, to not gain rattled or brought away, and still climb to handle the huge moments," note Shapiro said. "That to be an evasive answer, huh?"
16. Colon"s job high in strikeouts come on may 29, 1998, when he fanned 14 in a 7-3 complete-game success over the Blue Jays in ~ SkyDome. Jose Canseco was in the lineup (he fans twice), and the Toronto starter was i get it Clemens.
17. The ideal game of Colon"s career was a one-hit, 13-strikeout shutout that the Yankees top top Sept. 18, 2000 -- through Clemens again the the contrary starter. That created a video game Score the 97, the just time Colon topped 90 in his career. The only hit was louis Polonia"s one-out solitary up the middle in the eighth inning. "When Polonia acquired that hit, i felt choose I"d obtained punched in the chest," Colon said.
18. Earlier in that game, Kenny Lofton made an iconic record when he robbed Jorge Posada of a house run:
(OK, this items doesn"t have much to do with Colon, but it"s a proper excuse to operation a Kenny Lofton highlight.)
19. After ~ the game, ind pitching coach penis Pole dubbed it among the best pitched games he"d ever before seen. "The most impressive component was his control," Pole said. "To be throwing the hard and also hitting spots the method he was, that was amazing."
20. Colon winner the Cy Young award in 2005, as soon as he went 21-8 v a 3.48 ERA for the Angels. The was not a good choice. Johan Santana, who finished 3rd in the poll (also behind Mariano Rivera) should have actually won and also would success today, as voter pay much more attention to the overall picture. Santana went 16-7 with a 2.87 ERA, led Colon 238-157 in strikeouts and enabled 16 fewer operation while pitching nine more innings. He had actually 7.2 war to Colon"s 4.0.
21. Cy Young trophies paris forever, however, and also in that brand-new York times profile, Colon stated the finest moment that his job was giving his Cy Young trophy to his father.
22. ~ his Cy Young season, Colon ran right into a long string the injuries. Native 2006 come 2010, that started just 47 games and also went 14-21 with a 5.18 ERA. As soon as he let go the whole 2010 season because of rotator cuff damage and also a sick elbow, it appeared that his career can be over. Instead, he has won 89 games due to the fact that returning through the Yankees in 2011 and also making 2 All-Star groups (giving him 4 All-Star trips in his career).
23. Colon"s an initial All-Star appearance came in 1998. He was credited with the win, also though Barry binding crushed a three-run homer off him. And we have actually the video!
24. Other All-Stars the year consisted of Ben Grieve, Dean Palmer, Andy Ashby, stack Reed, Aaron Sele and also Fernando Vina. When"s the last time you heard any kind of of those name mentioned? Colon has actually been about forever.
25. In in march 2010, he received a controversial stem cabinet transplant to aid damaged tissues. Doctors had actually used human expansion hormone in similar surgeries, however those who performed the surgical treatment for Colon said they go not usage it ~ above him. MLB investigated the surgery and eventually clearing Colon.
26. Alas, in august 2012, then with the A"s, Colon obtained a 50-game suspension for testing positive because that testosterone. As a reminder, the A"s won the AL West that year. Colon to be still under suspension as soon as the team shed to the tigers in 5 games in the AL division Series.
Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images27. In 2016, the new York short article broke the news that Colon"s "double life" with his "secret family." A brand-new York woman filed a insurance claim that Colon had actually failed come pay child support because that the 2 elementary-school-age kids she had with Colon, who has actually been married since 1996. The 2 sides ultimately signed a confidentiality agreement.
28. When a guy has lasted this long, I choose to check out the box score for his an initial career game and also see that played in the game. Colon debuted top top April 4, 1997, because that the ind in Anaheim. Among Colon"s teammates to be Julio Franco, who had actually debuted in 1982 v the Phillies as a teammate the Pete Rose, who had debuted in 1963. Play for the Angels the day, however, was Eddie Murray, that was Rookie of the Year in 1977. Playing a couple of games because that the Orioles in "77 was Brooks Robinson, who made his debut on Sept. 17, 1955, a time as soon as three teams had actually yet to combine their first black players.
29. Who states the large guy can"t run?
30. Alas, Colon has actually never stolen a base. That won"t surprise you. It likewise probably won"t surprise you that Colon has never taken the extra base as a baserunner, such as going first to 3rd or second to residence on a single. Granted, the has had actually only 16 such opportunities, however he"s 0-for-16.
31. Colon"s career record at Safeco field is an remarkable 14-1 through a 1.98 ERA in 16 starts. As was mentioned on Twitter at the time of his last begin there, Colon is so old the he pitched at Safeco in a playoff video game (the joke being the the Mariners have actually the longest playoff drought in the majors, and that playoff game came in 2001).
32. I beg your pardon begs the question: Colon pitched for 11 teams, yet why not the Mariners?
33. Back in 2012, Colon threw 38 consecutive strikes in a begin for the A"s. Right here are all 38:
34. That"s what make late-career Colon for this reason amazing. He pounded the to win zone and also did it almost exclusively with fastballs. He had actually one that the highest rates that fastballs of any kind of starter in the majors, at 81.4% because that his career. He shed velocity over the years, yet his capability to manipulate the pitch, to reduced it and also sink it and hit the corners, is something every young pitchers can learn from.
35. "He is the master pitcher," Mets announcer Ron Darling as soon as said.
36. Colon once defined his crucial to success prefer this: "I stopped being a town boy, reasoning I deserve to throw any kind of stone, any kind of rock, through a wall, and started reasoning I might be a man who could last longer by taking something turn off my fastball and also not depending upon only throwing hard."
37. Colon was affiliated in one of the ideal trades in indians history. With the ind dismantling the great team that won six division titles in seven seasons from 1995 to 2001, Colon to be traded (with Tim Drew) come the Expos for Cliff Lee, Brandon Phillips and Grady Sizemore (and Lee Stevens). Those 3 minor leaguers go on to create 101.4 war ... However Colon has somehow outlasted every three.
38. In a sense, Colon is the critical Expo ever. He to be the last active player who played with the Expos.
39. Who claims the big guy can"t field his position?
40. Simply for fun, a to compare to room of Famer Jack Morris:
Colon: 247-188 (.568), 4.12 ERA, 106 ERA+, 47.8 WARMorris: 254-186 (.577), 3.90 ERA, 105 ERA+, 44.0 WAR
41. That course, Morris was a starter for three World collection champions ("84 Tigers, "87 Twins, "92 Blue Jays), and he pitched because that the "93 Blue Jays, though no in the postseason. Colon showed up in seven postseasons however just one world Series, through the Mets in 2015. He"s 3-5 with a 3.49 ERA in his postseason career.
42. Colon was the losing pitcher in relief in game 1 that that people Series, comes on in the 12th inning and losing on an unearned run in the bottom that the 14th.
43. Yes, he"s a skilled athlete:
44. In that game versus the Mariners, he take it a 102 mph line journey from Jean Segura off his gut and also still taped the out. His comment ~ the game? "I have actually a lot of of large belly, so I have the right to take it."
45. In September 2017, he proved no mercy ... Versus 12-year-olds.
46. He"s one author! His book, "Big Sexy: In His own Words," come out this month. Watch out, Hemingway.
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47. He"s do a comeback! In February, the signed a contract come pitch because that the Monclova Acereros because that 2020 and also yearns because that one an ext season in the majors. Keep pitching, Bartolo, save pitching.