The thought of a pitcher winning 300 games in just 11 seasons is mind boggling. I understand that because it was a different era, it was quite common for pitchers to approach 60 starts in a season. This made winning 20 and 30 plus win seasons very common. But Hoss took it to another level in 1883 and 1884 by starting in 68 and 73 of his team's games, respectively. This resulted in the best two regular seasons in the history and the single best pitching season ever in 1884.
After winning 25 and 33 games in his first two seasons for the Providence Grays, his workload picked up in 1883. He started 68 of the team's 98 games, winning 48 and losing 25. But, the schedule had increased to 112 games for the 1884 season, a sign that he would have to alternate games with Charlie Sweeney. The team would also have two other pitchers available to help out if needed. Radbourn and Sweeney would alternate games until Radbourn was suspended for "loafing" and insubordination. That did not last very long as Sweeney was let go for refusing to come out of a game.
Hoss pitched the next 9 games, going 7-1 with one tie. In what seemed like a scene from a movie, he played the next game in left field, then pitched the next six. He would play shortstop for a game and then set out on a historic streak of 20 consecutive starts on the mound, somewhere in there winning 20 straight starts. By the time the season was over, he won 59 and lost only 12. (Some dispute that he may have won as many as 61 games, both are the most ever in one season.) He kept his ERA to 1.38 but though good, it was common for pitchers to have low ERAs due to the shoddy fielding. Based on the amount of runs that scored, pitchers generally gave up twice as many runs as earned runs. He started 73 games, all complete games and twice came in the game as a reliever, closing a win out both times. He also played in 16 additional games as a position player, batting a respectable .230 (83-361, 1HR, 37 RBI). He pitched 678 innings that year giving up 528 hits and an incredible 98 walks while striking out 441 batters. He capped it off by starting, completing and winning all three games of the World Series for the Grays.
He would never top the season he had in 1884, but Radbourn had a historical career. In his 11 seasons, he won 20 or more games 9 times and finished with a 309-194 career record. After his career ended, he lost an eye in a gun accident before dying of complications of syphiliss on February 5th 1897. Feel free to check out his twitter account @OldHossRadbourn which perhaps can shred some more light on the most dominant pitcher in all of baseball history.