List of Major League Baseball career strikeout leaders

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In baseball, a strikeout occurs when the batter receives three strikes during his time at bat. Strikeouts are associated with dominance on the part of the pitcher and failure on the part of the batter.

Nolan Ryan has the most career strikeouts in Major League Baseball. During a record 27-year career, he struck out 5,714 batters.

The parentheses adjacent to an active player denote the number of strikeouts in the current season.

The List[edit]

Denotes elected to National Baseball Hall of Fame.
Bold Denotes active player.

A player is considered "inactive" if he has not played baseball for one year or has announced his retirement.
Stats updated through September 16, 2018.

[1][2]

Rank Player K
1 Nolan Ryan 5,714
2 Randy Johnson 4,875
3 Roger Clemens 4,672
4 Steve Carlton 4,136
5 Bert Blyleven 3,701
6 Tom Seaver 3,640
7 Don Sutton 3,574
8 Gaylord Perry 3,534
9 Walter Johnson 3,508
10 Greg Maddux 3,371
11 Phil Niekro 3,342
12 Ferguson Jenkins 3,192
13 Pedro Martínez 3,154
14 Bob Gibson 3,117
15 Curt Schilling 3,116
16 John Smoltz 3,084
17 CC Sabathia (130) 2,976
18 Jim Bunning 2,855
19 Mickey Lolich 2,832
20 Mike Mussina 2,813
21 Cy Young 2,803
22 Frank Tanana 2,773
23 Justin Verlander (269) 2,685
24 David Cone 2,668
25 Chuck Finley 2,610
26 Tom Glavine 2,607
27 Warren Spahn 2,583
28 Bob Feller 2,581
29 Tim Keefe 2,564
30 Jerry Koosman 2,556
31 Javier Vázquez 2,536
32 Bartolo Colón (81) 2,535
33 A. J. Burnett 2,513
34 Christy Mathewson 2,507
Rank Player K
35 Don Drysdale 2,486
36 Jack Morris 2,478
37 Mark Langston 2,464
38 Félix Hernández (121) 2,463
39 Jim Kaat 2,461
39 Sam McDowell 2,453
41 Andy Pettitte 2,448
42 Jamie Moyer 2,441
43 Max Scherzer (277) 2,426
44 Zack Greinke (187) 2,423
45 Luis Tiant 2,416
46 Dennis Eckersley 2,401
47 Kevin Brown 2,397
48 Sandy Koufax 2,396
Cole Hamels (169) 2,396
50 Charlie Hough 2,362
51 Robin Roberts 2,357
52 Early Wynn 2,334
53 Rube Waddell 2,316
54 Juan Marichal 2,303
55 John Lackey 2,294
56 Dwight Gooden 2,293
57 Lefty Grove 2,266
58 Clayton Kershaw (142) 2,262
59 Eddie Plank 2,246
60 Tommy John 2,245
61 James Shields (147) 2,227
62 Jim Palmer 2,212
63 Jake Peavy 2,207
64 David Wells 2,201
65 Grover Cleveland Alexander 2,198
66 Jon Lester (142) 2,183
67 Vida Blue 2,175
68 Camilo Pascual 2,168
Rank Player K
69 Tim Wakefield 2,156
70 Dennis Martínez 2,149
71 Roy Halladay 2,117
72 Kevin Millwood 2,083
73 Bobo Newsom 2,082
74 Tim Hudson 2,080
75 Ryan Dempster 2,075
76 Fernando Valenzuela 2,074
77 Dazzy Vance 2,045
78 Rick Reuschel 2,015
79 Orel Hershiser 2,014
80 Dan Haren 2,013
81 Catfish Hunter 2,012
82 Andy Benes 2,000
83 Billy Pierce 1,999
84 Kevin Appier 1,994
85 Johan Santana 1,988
86 Red Ruffing 1,987
87 John Clarkson 1,978
88 Liván Hernández 1,976
89 Al Leiter 1,974
90 Bob Welch 1,969
91 Kenny Rogers 1,968
92 Whitey Ford 1,956
93 Bobby Witt 1,955
94 Amos Rusie 1,950
95 Danny Darwin 1,942
96 Tom Gordon 1,928
97 Ervin Santana (16) 1,921
98 Hideo Nomo 1,918
98 Jerry Reuss 1,907
100 Josh Beckett 1,901


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