Andrew Eugene "Andy" Pettitte (/ˈpɛtɪt/; born June 15, 1972) is an American former baseball starting pitcher who played 18 seasons in Major League Baseball (MLB), primarily for the New York Yankees. He also pitched for the Houston Astros. Pettitte won five World Series championships with the Yankees and was a three-time All-Star. He ranks as MLB's all-time postseason wins leader with 19.
Pettitte was drafted by the Yankees organization in 1990, and he signed with them a year later. After debuting in the major leagues in 1995, Pettitte finished third in voting for the American League (AL) Rookie of the Year Award. In 1996, he led the AL with 21 wins and was runner-up for the AL Cy Young Award, and two years later, he was named the Yankees' Opening Day starter. Pettitte established himself as one of the "Core Four" players who contributed to the Yankees' late-1990s dynasty that produced four championships. Pettitte won the 2001 American League Championship Series Most Valuable Player (MVP) Award in helping his team win the pennant. After spending nine seasons with the Yankees—a stint in which he won at least 12 games each season—Pettitte signed with the Astros in 2004. He rejoined the Yankees in 2007 and later that season admitted to using human growth hormone to recover from an elbow injury in 2002. Pettitte's second tenure with the team lasted six seasons, interrupted by a one-year retirement in 2011, and produced a fifth World series championship.
Pettitte's pitching repertoire includes a four-seam and cut fastball and several off-speed pitches such as a slider, curveball, and changeup. A left-handed pitcher, he has an exceptional pickoff move to first base, which has allowed him to record 100 career pickoffs as of August 16, 2013. Among Yankees pitchers, Pettitte ranks first in strikeouts (2,020), third in wins (219), and tied for first in games started (438). He won the most games of any pitcher in the 2000s.
- ^ Araton, Harvey (September 10, 2010). "Pettitte Rescues His Reputation With Stability". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). section B, p. 10. Archived from the original on September 13, 2010. Retrieved September 11, 2010.
Postseason victories, for starters. Pettitte has more, 19, than any other pitcher in history, fueled by the Yankees’ familiarity with October and by the expanded postseason.
By Dean Hanley
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