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Jason David Schmidt (born January 29, 1973 in Lewiston, Idaho) is a Major League Baseball pitcher for the Los Angeles Dodgers. On December 6, 2006 he, signed with the Dodgers,and received a three-year, $47 million contract.  Before signing with the Dodgers, he played for the San Francisco Giants (2001-2006), Pittsburgh Pirates (1996-2001) and Atlanta Braves (1995-1996). He was drafted by that team in the eight round, 206th total, of the 1991 draft.
Early Days in the Braves OrganizationEdit
Schmidt helped the Braves win the World Series in 1995 even though he only pitched in nine games the entire season. The Braves were also National League champions in 1996, but Schmidt was traded to the Pirates before his former club played and lost in the World Series to the New York Yankees.
As a member of the Pirates, Schmidt won 10, 11, and 13 games in 1997, 1998, and 1999, respectively. However, he was on a losing team each season in Pittsburgh. Most notable about his stay with the Pirates was that he was the last player on the team to wear number 42, as all of Major League Baseball retired it for Jackie Robinson in 1997. Schmidt then switched to number 22 for the remainder of his stay with the team, and has worn number 29 after leaving the Pirates.
San Francisco GiantsEdit
Schmidt was then acquired by the Giants in 2001 with John Vander Wal in exchange for Armando Rios and Ryan Vogelsong. Schmidt saw more success in San Francisco. Between his stints in Pittsburgh and San Francisco during the 2001 season, Schmidt compiled 13 wins. Schmidt re-signed as a free agent with San Francisco that winter, in what would become a 5 year $41 million deal. He went on to win 13 again in 2002 when the Giants made a World Series appearance, but lost to the Anaheim Angels. Jason started Games 1 and 4 of the 2002 World Series. In 2003, he won 17 games. Schmidt threw a 2-0 shutout in Game 1 of the 2003 NLDS, beating Josh Beckett, but his team lost once again in the playoffs, this time to the Florida Marlins. Jason was an All-Star this year as well as the league leader with a 2.34 earned run average. He placed second to Eric Gagné in the 2003 National League Cy Young voting.
On May 18, 2004, Jason Schmidt pitched a one-hitter against the Chicago Cubs and Matt Clement . The Giants won the game, 1-0. This performance was overshadowed by Randy Johnson's perfect game the same day. Schmidt also pitched a one-hitter against the Boston Red Sox. Schmidt would go on to win 18 games in 2004 and be voted the TSN Pitcher of the Year in the National League, and 4th in Cy Young voting. He also set a San Francisco single season record of 251 strikeouts, which was broken by Tim Lincecum in 2008.
On June 6, 2006, Schmidt struck out 16 batters against the Florida Marlins, which ties the all-time Giants Franchise record for most strikeouts in a single game, originally set by Hall of Famer Christy Mathewson of the New York Giants on October 3, 1904, against the St. Louis Cardinals. On top of that, he now holds the record for most strikeouts by a San Francisco Giant, previously held by Gaylord Perry, who threw 15 strikeouts on July 22, 1966 against the Philadelphia Phillies.
Schmidt pitched a complete game in the process. In a memorable ninth inning, when a wild pitch moved base runners onto second and third with no outs, and the Giants with a 2-1 lead, Schmidt proceeded to strike out the heart of the Marlins' lineup in order; cleanup hitter Miguel Cabrera, Josh Willingham, and then Jeremy Hermida.
Los Angeles DodgersEdit
Schmidt, though, has struggled with a right shoulder problem during the 2007 season, the first of his three year $47 million deal. After only three starts he missed 45 games with the injury before being reactivated from the DL on June 5th. He started three games after his return from the DL, the last two created more concern. On June 18th he was returned to the DL and underwent exploratory surgery to find the cause of his ineffectiveness. The damage to his shoulder was more severe than expected and he missed the rest of the 2007 season due to injury. The Dodgers hoped to have Schmidt back before the end of the 2008 season, but manager Joe Torre later said that Schmidt will not be back this season. Schmidt in his Dodger career has only one win in six starts.
Schmidt considers his place of childhood, Kelso Washington, home. A 1991 graduate of Kelso High School where he lettered in Football, Basketball and Baseball. At Kelso, he once threw a seven-inning, 20 strikeout no-hitter against Hoquiam High School. He is married to wife Bethany. They have three children: Makynlee (born January 14, 2001), Mason (born January 29, 2004), and Madden (born April 22, 2007).
Like many baseball players, Schmidt has several superstitions. He never steps on the foul line when walking to or from the pitching mound. He always has a family breakfast of French Toast on game day. And never talks to media the day before he starts.
He is a born-again Christian. Of note, his Uncle, the late G. Raymond Carlson, was General superintendent of the Assemblies of God (1986-1993). Schmidt has been active with City Ministries International, bringing inner city kids to games and giving a post game testimony.
- List of Major League Baseball leaders in career wins
- List of Major League Baseball ERA champions
- Top 100 strikeout pitchers of all time
- Career statistics and player information from MLB, or ESPN, or Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or The Baseball Cube
|National League ERA Champion|