Sam McDowell is born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The hard-throwing southpaw will be tied to the northeast Ohio region throughout his life, starting when he attends Cleveland’s Central Catholic High School. He will be signed by the Indians in 1960 and will debut one year later, six days before his 19th birthday.
“Sudden Sam” will spend 15 seasons in the Major Leagues, with the first eleven coming in an Indians uniform. He will be a six-time All-Star, all for Cleveland, and will lead the American League in strikeouts in five of six seasons from 1965 to 1970. In each of those last three seasons, he will lead all pitchers in baseball.