Steven Norman Carlton (born December 22, 1944) is a former left-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball, from 1965 to 1988. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1994. He was affectionately known to Philadelphia fans as "Lefty". He played the most number of years for the Philadelphia Phillies, receiving his greatest acclaim as a professional and winning four Cy Young Awards. In addition, Carlton spent time with the St. Louis Cardinals, Chicago White Sox, San Francisco Giants, Cleveland Indians and Minnesota Twins.
Carlton has the second-most lifetime strikeouts of any left-handed pitcher (4th overall), and the second-most lifetime wins of any left-handed pitcher (11th overall). He was the first pitcher to win four Cy Young Awards in a career. He held the lifetime strikeout record several times between 1982 and 1984, before his contemporary Nolan Ryan passed him. One of his most remarkable records was accounting for nearly half (46%) of his team's wins, when he won 27 games for the last-place (59-97) 1972 Phillies. He is still the last National League pitcher to win 25 or more games in one season, as well as the last pitcher from any team to throw more than 300 innings in a season. He also holds the record with the most career balks of any pitcher, with 90 (double the second on the all time list, Bob Welch).
Carlton was born and reared in Miami, Florida, where he played little league and American Legion baseball during his youth. He attended North Miami High School, and later Miami-Dade Community College. In 1963, while a student at Miami-Dade, he signed with the St. Louis Cardinals for a $5,000 bonus.