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The Joe Niekro Foundation
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190 lbs.
If you pitch, what type of pitcher are you... Power? Ground ball, Fly ball, Knuckleball?
Knuckleball Pitcher
I currently:
Enjoy watching games
Baseball Playing Experience:
Major League
Baseball Coaching Experience:
Major League
Softball Playing Experience:
More About Me:
Joe Niekro was part of the fabric of major league baseball from 1967 to 1988, 22 seasons, notching 221 wins. He was also one of the most successful knuckleball pitchers of his era.
Niekro was born on November 7, 1944 in Martins Ferry, Ohio. He was drafted in the third round by the Chicago Cubs in 1966 and was in the majors by 1967, going 10-7 as a 22-year old rookie.
Niekro used a fastball and slider in his first few years in the majors, going 24-17 with the Cubs in 1967-68. Niekro spent 1969-74 with the Cubs, Padres, Tigers and Braves.
It was in Atlanta he started working seriously on the knuckleball which his father had taught him and his older brother, Phil, was using with great success. Mastering the pitch would lead to the most successful seasons of his career.
Joe Niekro is most remembered for his days with the Houston Astros, which he joined at the age of 30, at the beginning of the 1975 season after being purchased from the Braves. Over half his career innings and wins came with the Astros.
He notched 20+ victories two times during that span, when he was 34 and 35 years old in 1979 and 1980. In 1979, Niekro led the National League in wins and shutouts and was largely responsible for leading the Astros to the NLCS playoffs.
In 1979, when the Astros contended until the final week of the season for the National League West Division title, Niekro was 21-11, tying for the National League lead in victories with his brother, Phil. The next year, Niekro was 20-12, becoming the first Houston pitcher to win 20 games in a season twice. Niekro spent the next three years with the New York Yankees and Minnesota Twins. It was with the Twins that Joe pitched in a World Series game for the only time in his career, working two shutout innings in Game 4 against St. Louis. In his career in three postseason games with the Astros and Twins, Niekro worked 20 innings and allowed no earned runs.
Niekro retired in 1988 with a lifetime record 221-204. Post retirement, Niekro spent his time devoted to helping his son Lance, pursue his baseball career, never missing one of Lance’s practices or games. Joe’s effort paid off, Lance was the 2nd round draft pick by the San Francisco Giants in 2000.
Joe, along with his brother Phil, hold the record for the most wins by two brothers, with 539, in the history of baseball and Joe holds the record of the winningest pitcher in Houston Astros history. In 2005, Niekro was inducted into the Texas Hall of Fame.
On October 26, 2006, Niekro suffered a brain aneurysm and lost his life the following day. Today, Joe legacy lives on through The Joe Niekro Foundation, committed to the awareness and funding for aneurysm research and treatment.

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The Joe Niekro Foundation's Blog

Can You Give Two Minutes Each Day?

Posted on January 7, 2011 at 9:31am 0 Comments


2011 is off to a great start.  Just this morning, The Joe Niekro Foundation received news that we are in the running for a $250,000 grant from The Pepsi Refresh Project.  For the past four months, we have been attempting to submit our idea for approval, and January is our lucky…


Be a Part of the Legends Baseball Fantasy Camp!

Posted on January 31, 2010 at 7:59pm 0 Comments

Grab your glove and dust off those cleats…Legends Fantasy Camp is hitting the streets. The Joe Niekro Foundation and Character and Courage Foundation have teamed up to bring you a baseball camp unlike any other. Learn the subtle nuances of the game from four Hall of Fame greats and six former major leaguers, as you experience five fun filled days in the city that never… Continue

When you touch the heart of one, you touch the heart of thousands

Posted on January 27, 2010 at 11:00pm 0 Comments

Yesterday, I had the amazing opportunity to speak to a group of students in the medical assisting program at Keiser University. The class wasn't huge, about 125 people, but what an extraordinary group of men and women. As I stood at the podium in the front of the auditorium, I felt that every ounce of their attention was drawn to my story. I made it a point to tell them that I wasn't there to speak medical jargon; but instead I was there to share my real life experience and personal story of… Continue

New Aneurysm Treatment Method Approved by FDA

Posted on January 15, 2010 at 8:57pm 0 Comments

The development of aneurysm research has expanded. The FDA has recently approved a liquid material called Onyx 500 that will join clipping and coiling as the methods of treating aneurysms. This procedure is less invasive than the traditional open skull surgery or platinum coils, and involves threading a catheter through the… Continue

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At 2:03pm on October 26, 2009, MLPO.ORG said…
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