My entire argument here is that Ryan, while DEFINITELY worthy of the HOF and all of his accolades, was not one of the "best" pitchers in history. His longevity is his hallmark and his durability is INSANE. NO ONE will EVER come close to him again as far as taking the ball every fifth day and going out there and pitching 6 or 7 innings. He was a VERY solid pitcher, but NOT one of the best of all time. Ryan deserves his status because he was ELECTRIC. He had the ability to, on ANY given day, go out there and throw a no-no or a one-hitter. When he was in command he was unhittable. BUT, there were FAR TOO MANY times where he was simply an innings eater. He'd strike out 10, walk 5 and give up 4 runs in 7 innings. That is NOT greatness, no matter what your measure. The bottom line is that the TITLE OF THIS THREAD is VERY accurate. Ryan was, for the most part, a THOROUGHLY AVERAGE GOOD PITCHER. His longevity makes him a freak, and his (very) OCCASIONAL ability to dominate makes him a Hall of Fame worthy pitcher. But there are FAR too many people who elevate his status to MYTHICAL levels. Ryan was FUN TO WATCH and absolutely ELECTRIFIED crowds, but he was also just a smidge above mediocre when you look at the big picture. If you're not willing to accept that fact then you are absolutely DELUSIONAL.