VAN LINGLE MUNGO
1911-1985

Van Lingle Mungo


 
RHP 1931-43, 45 Dodgers , Giants

"(Van) Mungo and I get along fine. I just tell him I won't stand for no nonsense, and then I duck." - Casey Stengel

In the mid-1930s, Mungo was considered to have the talent of contemporaries Dizzy Dean and Carl Hubbell, but he pitched for losing Dodger clubs and made matters worse by being easily upset by his teammates' ineptitude. Accused of wasting his strength by compiling strikeouts early in his games, he believed the only sure way to retire batters was to fan them. He was the 1936 National League strikeout leader, with 238. He also led the NL in walks three times. In an era when starters were expected to go the distance, Mungo, who led the NL in games started in 1934 and 1936, only finished 47% of his career starts. But between 1932 and 1936, he averaged 16 wins a year.

Mungo was wild and mean, a high-kicking fireballer with a fierce temper. He was known as a drinker, and was involved in some bizarre off-the-field incidents. He once had to be smuggled out of Cuba to escape the machete-wielding husband of a nightclub dancer with whom he'd been caught in bed. His career went downhill after he injured his arm in the 1937 All-Star Game. He won only 13 ML games over his next six seasons. Becoming a junkballer, he went 14-7 in 1945. The lifetime .221 hitter sometimes pinch-hit. In 1970 his colorful name was prominently used in a nostalgic bossa nova ballad.

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Career Statistics


Year
Age
Team
League
Wins
Losses
Games
Games
Started
Complete
Games
Shutouts
Saves
Innings
Pitched
Hits
Earned
Runs
Home Runs
Allowed
Bases on
Balls
Strike
Outs
ERA
1931
20
Brooklyn Dodgers
NL
3
1
5
4
2
1
0
31.0
27
8
0
13
12
2.32
1932
21
Brooklyn Dodgers
NL
13
11
39
33
11
1
2
223.3
224
110
9
115
10
4.43
1933
22
Brooklyn Dodgers
NL
16
15
41
28
18
3
0
248.0
223
75
7
84
110
2.72
1934
23
Brooklyn Dodgers
NL
18
16
45
38
22
3
3
315.3
300
118
15
104
184
3.37
1935
24
Brooklyn Dodgers
NL
16
10
37
26
18
4
2
214.3
205
87
13
90
143
3.65
1936
25
Brooklyn Dodgers
NL
18
19
45
37
22
2
3
311.7
275
116
8
118
238
3.35
1937
26
Brooklyn Dodgers
NL
9
11
25
21
14
0
3
161.0
136
52
3
56
122
2.91
1938
27
Brooklyn Dodgers
NL
4
11
24
18
6
2
0
133.3
133
58
11
72
72
3.92
1939
28
Brooklyn Dodgers
NL
4
5
14
10
1
0
0
77.3
70
28
7
33
34
3.26
1940
29
Brooklyn Dodgers
NL
1
0
7
0
0
0
1
22.0
24
6
1
10
9
2.45
1941
30
Brooklyn Dodgers
NL
0
0
2
0
0
0
0
2.0
1
1
0
2
0
4.50
1942
31
New York Giants
NL
1
2
9
5
0
0
0
36.3
38
24
4
21
27
5.94
1943
32
New York Giants
NL
3
7
45
13
2
2
2
154.3
140
67
7
79
83
3.91
1945
34
New York Giants
NL
14
7
26
26
7
2
0
183.0
161
65
4
71
101
3.20
14 Yr WL%
.511
   
120
115
364
259
123
20
16
2112.7
1957
815
89
868
1242
3.47

Appearances on Leaderboards and Awards
 
 
All-Star
1934
1936
1937
1945
ERA
1933-2.72-7th
1936-3.35-7th
1937-2.91-6th
Wins
1933-16-10th
1934-18-7th
1935-16-10th
1936-18-4th
1945-14-9th
Won-Loss %
1945-.667-6th
(BB + H)/9IP
1934-11.53-10th
1936-11.35-8th
1937-10.73-7th
1945-11.41-10th
Hits Allowed/9IP
1933-8.09-5th
1934-8.56-5th
1935-8.61-6th
1936-7.94-2nd
1937-7.60-1st
1945-7.92-4th
Games
1933-41-9th
1934-45-9th
1936-45-5th
1943-45-4th
Saves
1936-3-9th
1937-3-8th
Innings
1934-315.3-1st
1936-311.7-2nd
Strikeouts
1932-107-7th
1933-110-6th
1934-184-2nd
1935-143-3rd
1936-238-1st
1937-122-7th
1945-101-4th
Comp. Games
1933-18-10th
1934-22-4th
1935-18-9th
1936-22-3rd
Shutouts
1933-3-9th
1934-3-5th
1935-4-1st
1936-2-10th
Home Runs Allow.
1934-15-8th
Base On Balls Allow.
1932-115-1st
1933-84-3rd
1934-104-1st
1935-90-3rd
1936-118-1st
1943-79-7th
Hits Allowed
1934-300-1st
1936-275-4th
Losses
1933-15-7th
1934-16-6th
1936-19-3rd
   


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