Put a Sock in it

Updated: September 13, 2006, 6:51 PM ET
By Bob Carter | Special to ESPN.com

Signature Game
Oct. 19, 2004 - A sore-ankled loser in the American League Championship Series opener, Boston's Curt Schilling desperately wanted to start Game 6 at Yankee Stadium. Even if he had to do it with a detached tendon in his right ankle, a tendon fastened by sutures.

He had a mission -- moving Boston toward its first world championship in 86 years -- and the Red Sox, once down 3-0 in the series, needed him to draw them even. So he pitched.

Before the series began, Schilling had said, "I'm not sure I can think of any scenario more enjoyable than making 55,000 people from New York shut up."

The 21-game winner did that, throwing 99 pitches and allowing one run (on Bernie Williams' homer) over seven innings as blood seeped through his right sock. He struck out four, didn't walk a hitter and beat the Yankees 4-2.

Schilling called the training staff's work to get him ready "phenomenal."

Boston first baseman Doug Mientkiewicz said, "That's got to go down as the guttiest pitching performance in the history of the game."

Odds 'n' Ends

  • While at Shadow Mountain High School in Phoenix, Schilling was clocked at 90 mph at a Cincinnati Reds tryout camp. In the majors, he threw in the mid to high 90s.

  • On July 29, 1988, he and outfielder Brady Anderson were traded by Boston to Baltimore for pitcher Mike Boddicker.

  • After making the majors with Baltimore in September 1988, Schilling cashed his first paycheck, spread the $5,000 in $20 bills all over his hotel room bed and laid in it.

  • He started four games for Baltimore that September (0-3, 9.82 ERA) and appeared in five games the next year (0-1, 6.23 ERA) before getting into 35 games, all as a reliever, in 1990 (1-2, 2.54 ERA with three saves).

  • On Jan. 10, 1991, the Orioles traded him to Houston with outfielder Steve Finley and pitcher Pete Harnisch for slugging first baseman Glenn Davis.

  • After going 3-5 with a 3.81 ERA and eight saves in 56 relief appearances in 1991 for the Astros, Schilling met Roger Clemens while working out in Houston. Clemens lectured the younger pitcher for about an hour, telling him to get serious about his training regimen and his career. Schilling said he went to spring camp with an improved attitude.

  • However, the Astros weren't impressed and traded him to the Phillies for pitcher Jason Grimsley on April 2, 1992.

  • In his first season with Philadelphia, Schilling was made a starter and finished 14-11 with a 2.35 ERA. Included was a one-hitter (a homer by Bobby Bonilla) in a 2-1 win over the Mets.

  • Schilling and his wife, Shonda, married in 1992. She was an associate television producer in Baltimore when they met in 1990 while he was with the Orioles. They have four children  Gehrig, Gabriella, Grant and Garrison.

  • In the strike-shortened season of 1994, Schilling went on the disabled list with a bone spur in his elbow and later hurt his knee. He finished 2-8 with a 4.48 ERA in 13 starts.

  • Shoulder surgery cut short the next season after 17 starts (he went 7-5 with a 3.57 ERA) and he began 1996 on the disabled list.

  • Schilling struck out 16 in eight innings in beating the Yankees, 5-1, on Sept. 1, 1997 at Veterans Stadium.

  • After striking out a career-best 319 batters (in 254 1/3 innings) in 1997, he fanned 300 the next season to become the fifth pitcher in history with at least 300 strikeouts in consecutive years. He led the NL in strikeouts both seasons.

  • Schilling was the National League's starter in the 1999 All-Star Game in Boston. He was the losing pitcher, allowing three hits and two runs in two innings in the 4-1 defeat.

  • With his contract due to run out in 2001, the Phillies traded Schilling to Arizona on July 26, 2000 for first baseman Travis Lee and pitchers Omar Daal, Nelson Figueroa and Vicente Padilla.

  • After signing a four-year contract with Arizona in 2001 for almost $40 million, Schilling gave $500,000 to the United Way and $250,000 each to the ALS chapters in Phoenix and Philadelphia.

  • That year he received the Roberto Clemente Man of the Year Award, the Branch Rickey Award and the Hutch Award, largely because of his community service.

  • Schilling got his second World Series win when he beat the Yankees 9-1 in the 2001 opener at Phoenix.

  • His third Series victory came when, pitching on that injured ankle, he blanked the Cardinals in Boston for six innings in Game 2 in 2004.

  • Schilling's career high in strikeouts in a game is 17, against Milwaukee on April 2, 2002.

  • He finished fourth in the NL Cy Young Award voting in 1997 (to Montreal's Pedro Martinez) and second in 2001 and 2002 (both times to Arizona teammate Randy Johnson). He was the AL runner-up in 2004, losing to Minnesota's Johan Santana.

  • On Nov. 28, 2003, Schilling was traded to the Red Sox for three pitchers  Casey Fossum, Brandon Lyon and Jorge de la Rosa  and a minor leaguer.

  • In his third start in 2005, Schilling suffered a bone bruise on the same ankle he had surgically repaired in the offseason. The injury put him on Boston's disabled list into July.

  • Schilling, whose father Curt spent his career in the Army, became a big military history buff and is particularly interested in World War II. He has a large collection of memorabilia from the war and also collects baseball souvenirs.

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