Add #31 to the list – the Chicago Cubs will retire No. 31 in honor of Hall of Fame pitcher Ferguson Jenkins and future Hall of Fame pitcher Greg Maddux. The retirement ceremony will take place before the Cubs May 3rd game against the Florida Marlins at Wrigley Field. Jenkins has probably had to wait to have the No. 31 retired until Maddux retired from MLB this past December. The #31 will be the 5th number retired by the Cubs, joining the likes of Ron Santo (No. 10); Ryne Sandberg (No. 23); Billy Williams (No. 26) and Jackie Robinson (No. 42 – retired by Major League Baseball).
Ferguson Jenkins had this to say about the upcoming honor – “Both of us had pretty good careers wearing that uniform number. Maddux won quite a few games, a few more than I did. Most of the fans remember your number and that’s what this is for, the fans. To have your flag flowing with four other great players – Santo, Ryno, Ernie and Billy – is fantastic. Now with Greg Maddux, there will be six of us. We all had outstanding careers as a Cub.”
Jenkins pitched for the Cubs from 1966-1973 and from 1982-1983. Jenkins won a Cy Young Award for the Cubs in 1971. Jenkins still holds the Cubs strikeout honor with 2,038 total strikeouts. Jenkins had a career 284-226 record and a career 3.34 ERA. Jenkins also had 3,192 career strikeouts and 997 career walks.
Maddux had this to say about wearing the No. 31 during his years as a Cub – “I thought that was pretty cool that they gave me Fergie’s number because I knew he was one of the best pitchers to ever play for the Cubs and in baseball period. It was an honor to have his number.”
Maddux pitched for the Cubs from 1986-1992 and then again from 2004-2006. Maddux won 4 Cy Young Awards during his career – his 1st came with the Cubs in 1992 and he followed that up with 3 more consecutive Cy Young Awards in an Atlanta Braves uniform from 1993-1995. Maddux finished his career with a 355-227 career record and a career 3.16 ERA. Maddux had 3,371 career strikeouts and stands 5th on the Cubs strikeout list with 1,305 strikeouts. Maddux also notched 2 significant milestones in a Cubs uniform – he won his 300th game on August 7, 2004 and he recorded his 3,000th career strikeout on July 26, 2005.