Steven Carlton is a former professional baseball player. Carlton debuted with the St. Louis Cardinals as a 20–year-old in 1965 and by 1967 was a regular in the Cardinals rotation. Carlton would soon be known as an intimidating and dominant pitcher. Carlton enjoyed immediate success in St. Louis, posting winning records and reaching the World Series in 1967 and 1968.
He played in Major League Baseball as a left-handed pitcher for six different teams from 1965 to 1988, most notably as a member of the Philadelphia Phillies with whom he won four Cy Young Awards as well as the 1980 World Series. As of 2020, Carlton has the second-most lifetime strikeouts of any left-handed pitcher, and the second-most lifetime wins of any left-handed pitcher. He was the first pitcher to win four Cy Young Awards in a career. He held the lifetime strikeout record several times between 1982 and 1984. One of his most remarkable records was accounting for nearly half of his team's wins, when he won 27 games for the last-place (59–97) 1972 Phillies. Also as of 2020, he is the last NL pitcher to win 25 or more games in one season, as well as the last pitcher from any team to throw more than 300 innings in a season.
He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1994. The Philadelphia Phillies honored him with a statue outside Citizens Bank Park in 2004. In an interview with ESPN's Roy Firestone, Firestone asked Carlton, “Why do you think you were put on this earth?” Carlton answered, “To teach the world how to throw a slider.”