Today in Chicago Cubs History: May 3
The No. 31 was hung on the flagpoles in center field to honor both pitchers who made invaluable contributions to the club during their time on the Northside.
During his eight seasons with the Cubs over two different stints, Greg Maddux dominated batters both at Wrigley field and away from the Friendly Confines with his precision control, pitch changes and calm, collected presence on the mound.
Born in San Angelo, Texas, Maddux finished his career as one of the most decorated pitchers in National League history, tallying a 335-227 lifetime record, a 3.16 ERA and a total of 3,371 strikeouts. An 18-time Gold Glove Winner and 8-time All-Star, Maddux’s No. 31 was also retired by the Atlanta Braves in 1989 to recognize the outstanding contributions to their club from 1993-2003, the time spent by Maddux away from Wrigley Field.
Ferguson Arthur “Fergie” Jenkins was an imposing presence on the mound in Chicago for seven seasons in the mid 60s-mid 70s and again to close out his career in 1983. Fergie was a three-time All-Star selection and won 284 games in his major league career while striking out 3,192 batters. An outstanding athlete, Jenkins also spent time barnstorming with the legendary Harlem Globetrotters.
Only Jenkins, Greg Maddux, Curt Schilling, and Pedro Martinez tallied both more than 3,000 strikeouts and less than 1,000 walks in their careers.
Needless to say Greg Maddux and Fergie Jenkins are a part of elite company, not only in Cubs history, but MLB history as well.