Nolan Ryan

He is one of baseball's pitching legends. A member of Baseball's Hall of Fame, he is the all-time career strikeout leader in major league baseball with 5,714 strikeouts. He is the all-time leader in no-hitters with seven. He is a member of the 300 club, an eight-time All-Star, World Series champion, and his number is retired by three teams. He was nicknamed "The Ryan Express". This man is none other than Nolan Ryan.
His birthname is Lynn Nolan Ryan Jr. Nolan was born on January 31st, 1947 in Refugio, Texas. He was the youngest of six children. Even as a young child he enjoyed throwing stuff at objects, so his father thought baseball would be a great sport for Nolan. He started playing Little League baseball when he was nine-years-old, and pitched his first no-hitter a few years later. In his senior year of high school he posted a 20-4 record, batted .700 in a state tournament, and was put on the All-State team.
Nolan was drafted by the New York Mets out of high school in the 1965 free-agent draft. He played in the West Carolinas League beginning on September 11, 1966. It was during this time his fellow players noticed his outstanding fastball, and also his lack of control. He would have both of these through the rest of his career. His Minor League days were short lived, as he was called up by the Mets at the end of the '66 season, and was the second-youngest player in the league (he would retire the oldest player in the league). He gave up his first home run to Joe Torre. His performance was less than the club had expected of him as he was often homesick, and was sent back to the minor leagues for the '67 season because he couldn't find the strike zone.
He Married his high school sweetheart, Ruth, in 1968 and she moved in with him in New York City which eased his homesickness. Nolan's performance was much better that year and he would never see the minor leagues again. Despite his talent, he couldn't crack into the talented '69 Mets starting...