Randy Johnson’s Top 5 Arizona Diamondbacks’ Moments

By Thomas Lynch
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The form that struck out 4,875 batters (Photo by Barry Gossage/Getty Images)

4-372 Strikeouts

The debate over which Randy Johnson season was the most dominant could take hours. He set a career high for victories in 2002 with 24. He went 18-2 in the work stoppage-shortened 1995 season. In 1999, Johnson threw a single-season high 271 2/3 innings. However, if we are going to use dominance in terms of just strikeouts, we have to go for 2001 when the Unit struck out an amazing-for-any-era 372 batters.

If you look at baseballreference.com, that number is only 11th-best. However, we are using the so-called modern era which most times means after 1900. Using that metric, Johnson’s 372 punchouts are third best behind Nolan Ryan‘s 383 set in 1973 and Sandy Koufax‘s 382 set in 1965. What are the odds any of RJ’s 300 strikeout seasons are surpassed, never mind his best one? It took him almost 250 innings to get to 372 where today, the highest innings totals per year is in the 220’s. I am comfortable in saying that we will not see that many strikeouts in one season for a very long time.

Next: 2002-Four Consecutive Cy Young Awards