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1970s / Wilbur Wood SI Cover
A friend recently asked me a great baseball trivia question: Which MLB pitcher holds the post-1900 record for most games started over two consecutive seasons? My gut reaction was it had to be someone in the first decade of the twentieth century. When he said it was set after 1970, I correctly guessed Wilbur Wood of the Chicago White Sox. Wood, pictured here on a 1973 Sports Illustrated cover, was a steady knuckleball hurler who started 49 games in 1972 and 48 in 1973 to set the record of 97 starts over two consecutive seasons! Wood's career pretty much ended in May 1976 when a line drive shattered his kneecap. After a long rehab session, Wood returned to baseball but was not nearly as skillful on the mound as he had been before the injury.