Hall of Fame pitcher and former U.S. Senator Jim Bunning passes away at 85

Hall of Fame pitcher and former U.S. Senator Jim Bunning has died at 85.
james Bunning pitching in game as Philadelphia Phillie 1971

Best known around the sports world as a Hall of Fame pitcher that spent 17 years in the Majors, Jim Bunning has passed away at the age of 85.

Bunning’s son confirmed the news on Twitter.


The cause of death is not yet known, but there are indications that it stemmed from complications due to a stroke Bunning suffered back in October of last year.

Those who worked with Bunning in the past paid their respects to the all-time great. In addition to a Major League Baseball career that spanned three different decades with four teams, Bunning served in the United States Senate from 1999-2011, as a representative of his home state of Kentucky.

“Senator Jim Bunning led a long and storied life. From his days in the major leagues to his years as my colleague in the Senate — and the many points in between, from the City Council to the House of Representatives — Jim rarely shied away from a new adventure,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) said in a statement, via WLWT in Cincinnati. “This Hall of Famer will long be remembered for many things, including a perfect game, a larger-than-life personality, a passion for Kentucky, and a loving family. Elaine and I offer our sincere condolences to Mary and the entire Bunning family.”

On the diamond, Bunning earned nine All-Star appearances and finished his career with 224 wins as well as a solid 3.27 ERA. He finished as a runner-up in the NL Cy Young voting in 1967 after putting up 300-plus innings.

Bunning his survived by his wife, Mary Catherine Theis, nine children, 35 grand children and 14 great-grandchildren.