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 List[edit]

Denotes elected to National Baseball Hall of Fame.
Bold Denotes active player.
( ) Strikeouts for the 2016 season.

A player is considered "inactive" if he has not played baseball for one year or has announced his retirement.
Stats updated through September 18, 2016.

[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 Jim Bunning 2,855
18 Mickey Lolich 2,832
19 Mike Mussina 2,813
20 Cy Young 2,803
21 Frank Tanana 2,773
22 CC Sabathia (142) 2,716
23 David Cone 2,668
24 Chuck Finley 2,610
25 Tom Glavine 2,607
26 Warren Spahn 2,583
27 Bob Feller 2,581
28 Tim Keefe 2,564
29 Jerry Koosman 2,556
30 Javier Vázquez 2,536
31 A. J. Burnett 2,513
32 Christy Mathewson 2,507
33 Don Drysdale 2,486
34 Jack Morris 2,478
Rank Player K
35 Mark Langston 2,464
36 Jim Kaat 2,461
37 Sam McDowell 2,453
38 Andy Pettitte 2,448
39 Jamie Moyer 2,441
40 Luis Tiant 2,416
41 Dennis Eckersley 2,401
42 Kevin Brown 2,397
43 Sandy Koufax 2,396
44 Charlie Hough 2,362
45 Robin Roberts 2,357
46 Bartolo Colón (116) 2,353
47 Early Wynn 2,334
48 Rube Waddell 2,316
49 Juan Marichal 2,303
50 Dwight Gooden 2,293
51 Lefty Grove 2,266
52 Félix Hernández (112) 2,254
53 Eddie Plank 2,246
54 Tommy John 2,245
55 Jim Palmer 2,212
56 Jake Peavy (102) 2,207
57 David Wells 2,201
58 Grover Cleveland Alexander 2,198
59 Vida Blue 2,175
60 Camilo Pascual 2,167
61 Justin Verlander (223) 2,166
62 Tim Wakefield 2,156
63 Dennis Martínez 2,149
64 John Lackey (163) 2,138
65 Roy Halladay 2,115
66 Cole Hamels (187) 2,109
67 Kevin Millwood 2,083
68 Bobo Newsom 2,082
Rank Player K
69 Tim Hudson 2,080
70 Ryan Dempster 2,075
71 Fernando Valenzuela 2,074
72 Dazzy Vance 2,045
73 Rick Reuschel 2,015
74 Zack Greinke (127) 2,014
Orel Hershiser 2,014
76 Dan Haren 2,013
77 Catfish Hunter 2,012
78 Andy Benes 2,000
79 Billy Pierce 1,999
80 Kevin Appier 1,994
81 Johan Santana 1,988
82 Red Ruffing 1,987
83 John Clarkson 1,978
84 Liván Hernández 1,976
85 Al Leiter 1,974
86 Bob Welch 1,969
87 Kenny Rogers 1,968
88 James Shields (118) 1,960
89 Whitey Ford 1,956
90 Bobby Witt 1,955
91 Amos Rusie 1,950
92 Danny Darwin 1,942
93 Tom Gordon 1,928
94 Hideo Nomo 1,918
95 Jerry Reuss 1,907
96 Josh Beckett 1,901
Clayton Kershaw (155) 1,901
98 Barry Zito 1,885
99 Kid Nichols 1,8731
100 Mark Buehrle 1,870
  • ^ Baseball Reference lists Kid Nichols at 1,881 strikeouts and MLB.com credits him with 1,873. Total is listed according to MLB.com.


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