Nolan Ryan is the all time leader in career strikeouts.
Nolan Ryan is the all time leader in career strikeouts.
This list is for pitchers. For career strikeouts by batters, see List of Major League Baseball career strikeouts by batters leaders

The following list is of the top 100 pitchers in career strikeouts in Major League Baseball. In baseball, a strikeout occurs when the batter receives three strikes during his time at bat. Strikeouts are associated with dominance on the part of the pitcher and failure on the part of the batter.

Nolan Ryan[1][2][3] has the most career strikeouts in Major League Baseball. During a record 27-year career, he struck out 5,714 batters. The American League record is held by Roger Clemens[4] (4,167 strikeouts),[5] while in the National League, the record is 4,000 by Steve Carlton.[6][7]

The parentheses adjacent to an active player denote the number of strikeouts in the current season.

List

Denotes elected to National Baseball Hall of Fame.
Bold Denotes active player (with current season strikeouts shown).

A player is considered "inactive" if he has not played baseball for one year or has announced his retirement.

[8]

Rank Player K
1 Nolan Ryan 5,714
2 Randy Johnson 4,875
3 Roger Clemens 4,672
4 Steve Carlton 4,136
5 Bert Blyleven 3,701
6 Tom Seaver 3,640
7 Don Sutton 3,574
8 Gaylord Perry 3,534
9 Walter Johnson 3,508
10 Greg Maddux 3,371
11 Phil Niekro 3,342
12 Ferguson Jenkins 3,192
13 Max Scherzer (169) 3,189
14 Justin Verlander (167) 3,180
15 Pedro Martínez 3,154
16 Bob Gibson 3,117
17 Curt Schilling 3,116
18 CC Sabathia 3,093
19 John Smoltz 3,084
20 Zack Greinke (70) 2,879
21 Jim Bunning 2,855
22 Mickey Lolich 2,832
23 Mike Mussina 2,813
24 Cy Young 2,803
25 Clayton Kershaw (124) 2,794
26 Frank Tanana 2,773
27 David Cone 2,668
28 Chuck Finley 2,610
29 Tom Glavine 2,607
30 Warren Spahn 2,583
31 Bob Feller 2,581
32 Tim Keefe 2,564
33 Cole Hamels 2,560
34 Jerry Koosman 2,556
Rank Player K
35 Javier Vázquez 2,536
36 Bartolo Colón 2,535
37 Félix Hernández 2,524
38 A. J. Burnett 2,513
39 Christy Mathewson 2,502
40 Jon Lester 2,488
41 Don Drysdale 2,486
42 Jack Morris 2,478
43 Mark Langston 2,464
44 Jim Kaat 2,461
45 Sam McDowell 2,453
46 Andy Pettitte 2,448
47 Jamie Moyer 2,441
48 Luis Tiant 2,416
49 Dennis Eckersley 2,401
50 Kevin Brown 2,397
51 Sandy Koufax 2,396
52 Charlie Hough 2,362
53 Robin Roberts 2,357
54 Early Wynn 2,334
55 Rube Waddell 2,316
56 Juan Marichal 2,303
57 John Lackey 2,294
58 Dwight Gooden 2,293
59 Lefty Grove 2,266
60 Eddie Plank 2,246
61 Tommy John 2,245
62 James Shields 2,234
63 Jim Palmer 2,212
64 Jake Peavy 2,207
65 David Wells 2,201
66 Grover Cleveland Alexander 2,198
67 Vida Blue 2,175
68 Camilo Pascual 2,167
Rank Player K
69 Tim Wakefield 2,156
70 Dennis Martínez 2,149
71 Adam Wainwright (139) 2,143
72 Roy Halladay 2,117
73 Kevin Millwood 2,083
74 Bobo Newsom 2,082
75 Tim Hudson 2,080
76 David Price (37) 2,076
77 Ryan Dempster 2,075
78 Fernando Valenzuela 2,074
79 Chris Sale (5) 2,064
80 Madison Bumgarner (112) 2,060
81 Dazzy Vance 2,045
82 Rick Reuschel 2,015
83 Orel Hershiser 2,014
84 Dan Haren 2,013
85 Catfish Hunter 2,012
86 Andy Benes 2,000
87 Billy Pierce 1,999
88 Kevin Appier 1,994
89 Johan Santana 1,988
90 Red Ruffing 1,987
91 John Clarkson 1,978
Ervin Santana 1,978
93 Liván Hernández 1,976
94 Al Leiter 1,974
95 Bob Welch 1,969
96 Kenny Rogers 1,968
97 Whitey Ford 1,956
98 Bobby Witt 1,955
99 Amos Rusie 1,950
100 Danny Darwin 1,942

Active pitchers with 1,700 strikeouts (stats updated through September 24, 2022):

See also

References

  1. ^ "Nolan Ryan Career Stats". Baseball Reference. Retrieved July 28, 2021.
  2. ^ Boston, Talmadge. "Nolan Ryan Bio". Society For American Baseball Research. Retrieved July 28, 2021.
  3. ^ "Nolan Ryan Hall of Fame Profile". National Baseball Hall of Fame. Retrieved August 1, 2021.
  4. ^ "Roger Clemens Career Stats". Baseball Reference. Retrieved July 28, 2021.
  5. ^ "Player Pitching Season & Career Finder: Spanning Multiple Seasons or entire Careers, In the Regular Season, since 1871, Playing in the AL, requiring Strikeouts >= 3000, sorted by greatest Strikeouts". Stathead. Retrieved April 14, 2021.
  6. ^ "Steve Carlton Career Stats". Baseball Reference. Retrieved July 28, 2021.
  7. ^ "Player Pitching Season & Career Finder:Spanning Multiple Seasons or entire Careers, In the Regular Season, since 1871, Playing in the NL, requiring Strikeouts >= 3000, sorted by greatest Strikeouts". Stathead. Retrieved April 14, 2021.
  8. ^ MLB.com – Career Leaders for Strikeouts