Nolan Ryan, born 31 Jan 1947, by Ruth Munson, Oil on canvas, 1994-1997: With a fastball that topped 100 miles per hour and an equally devastating curve, hurler Nolan Ryan bedeviled batters in both leagues over the course of twenty-seven years in the majors. Drafted by the Mets in 1965, Ryan helped the New York ball club to its first World Series championship in 1969, but was later traded to the California Angels after struggling with his control. The move agreed with Ryan. His earned run average dropped, his strikeout numbers soared, and he astonished the baseball world by pitching four no-hitters in three years (1973-75). Ryan went on to play nine seasons with the Houston Astros before rounding out his career with the Texas Rangers. By the time he retired in 1993, Ryan not only had a total of seven no-hitters to his credit but owned the all-time strikeout record with 5,714.