Samuel Edward Thomas McDowell (September 21, 1942-) was poised to become one of the greatest strikeouts pitchers of his generation as he led the American League five times in Ks, but wildness and a contract dispute and eventual trade took its toll on the big lefthander while alcoholism nearly derailed his career completely. McDowell caught the attention of Major League scouts as a high schooler, specifically after going 8-0 as a senior and then wowing fans at the Colt World Series when he pitched two no-hitters and one one-hitter. The lanky power-pitcher threw 40 no-hitters as an amateur and struck out 152 batters in 63 innings of high school ball. With tremendous power also came tremendous wildness, however. Despite growing up in the shadows of Forbes field in Pittsburgh, the Cleveland Indians signed Sam as a free agent in 1960 and briefly assigned him to the minors to work on his control. In his 1961 Major League debut, Sam pitched 6-1/3 shutouts innings, holding the Minnesota Twins to only three hits, fanning five. For the next few seasons he would continue to shuttle to and from the minors to help harness his wildness. Sudden Sam, nicknamed for his calm and deceiving delivery, possessed a blazing fastball, hard-breaking curve and hard slider that froze batters. In 1964, Sam had a breakout year with an 11-6 record, 177 strikeouts and a 2.70 ERA while leading the American League in strikeouts per nine innings (9.2), which he would accomplish six times in his 15-year career. In 1965, McDowell led the AL in earned run average with a 2.18 ERA, but also led in strikeouts and walks for the first of five times each. He also topped all AL pitchers in wild pitches for the first of three times. The six-time All-Star pitched for the Indians (1961-1971), the San Francisco Giants (1972-1973), the New York Yankees (1973-1974) and for his hometown Pittsburgh Pirates (1975) to end his career. McDowell finished third in the 1970 AL Cy Young voting and was named The Sporting News’ American League Pitcher of the Year after going 20-12 with league-highs of 304 Ks, 131 walks, batters faced (1,257) and strikeouts per nine (9.0). Sam McDowell retired in 1975 with a 141-134 record, 2,453 strikeouts, 103 complete games, 23 shutouts and a 3.17 ERA in 346 starts and 425 appearances. At the time of his retirement, he was third in strikeouts-per-nine inning behind Nolan Ryan and Sandy Koufax.