Casimir James “Jim” Konstanty (March 2, 1917 - June 11, 1976) was the best closer in the National League in 1950 who helped the Philadelphia Phillies’ “Whiz Kids” win their first NL pennant since 1915. Jim began pitching professionally in the Eastern and International Leagues with the Springfield Nationals and Syracuse Chiefs, respectively. He first pitched in the Major Leagues with the Cincinnati Reds (1944) and then the Boston Braves (1946) before landing in Philadelphia. With the Phillies, he joined a pitching staff that included Hall of Famer Robin Roberts and All-Stars Curt Simmons and Schoolboy Rowe and a Phillies squad with an average age of 26 in 1950. In spite of his age (33) and the fact that he was not a starter, in 1950 Konstanty went 16-7 with a league-leading 22 saves, appearing in a record-setting 74 games and became the first ever relief pitcher to be named the National League Most Valuable Player. He was also named The Sporting News Pitcher of the Year and earned his one and only All-Star selection. Jim helped Philadelphia reach the World Series for the first time in 35 years, but they fell to the New York Yankees in five games. Despite not having started once in the previous three regular seasons, Phillies manager Eddie Sawyer inserted Jim as the starter in Game 1, which he lost. Konstanty pitched 11 years in the big leagues with the Reds, Braves, Phils (1948-1954), the New York Yankees (1954-1956) and the St. Louis Cardinals (1956). Jim Konstanty retired following the 1956 season having gone 66-48 with 266 games finished, 74 saves, two shutouts, 14 complete games, 268 strikeouts and a 3.46 career ERA in 433 appearances.