Mussina has a pretty strong ERA advantage. Ryan pitched in a pitchers' era in pitchers' parks while Mussina did just the opposite. Ryan actually doesn't have a huge Innings advantage, either: six more innings per season when extrapolated out to 162 games (232 to 226). Ryan has the strikeouts, 17% more than the next-best pitcher in baseball history (Carlton), but he also has over 50% more walks than the pitcher with the next most (also Carlton). So even though he gave up the fewest H/9 in history, his WHIP is actually higher that Mussina's. In award voting, Ryan finished in the top-10 in the Cy Young race eight times; Mussina nine.
The real advantage Ryan has is that he pitched nine more years. Pitching until 46 gave him time to compile extra numbers and national attention as a freak of nature. Which I know, because he's still one of my heroes and the only guy approaching Cal Ripken among my favorite players (I'm sobbing just sitting here typing this).
Mussina was a better pitcher than Nolan Ryan. There's absolutely nothing wrong with that, either.
I didn't want to belabor this, but I really don't understand your approach to the comparison between Ryan and Mussina.
(I acknowledge your general support for Ryan)
It seems like in the 'new' metrics era we choose to parse things down and as you are doing in several spots look at per game or per season numbers in comparison. That totaly ignores the totallity of what Ryan accomplished.
You glossed over the fact that he was the hardest pitcher to get a hit off of OF ALL TIME...
...and it's not like he did that in some limited scope of innings.....he's 5th ALL TIME in innings Pitched
.....and he struck out A LOT more batters than any other pitcher EVER.
How do you look at those 3 stats and pretend that Mussina accomplished anything even remotely close.
Ryan (as Matt point out) had 7 no-hitters covering 3 decades (4-70s, 1-80s, 2-90s) including his last one at 44 years old.....Mussina was retired for 5 years and Ryan was throwing a no hitter.......and it wasn't just random, he dominated that season with 173 innings over 27 starts, a 2.91 ERA, and struck out over 200 guys.
1st All-Time in no-hitters with 7 (next is Koufax with 4)
T-1st All-Time 1-hitters with 12
Threw 18 2-hitters.
He threw a more than a whole season of 0-1-2 hitters (37)
The guy was an absolute workhorse. He started 41 games one year and pitched 333 innings striking out 367. The year before he pitched 326 innings and struck out 383. He struck out more than 300 guys 6 times.
He completed 222 games which was 1 out of every 3.5 starts, Mussina completed 57 games about one every 9 starts.
He threw 61 shutouts, Mussina 23.
....and when people say 'well he just did that because of his innings'......ok.....but you have to be good enough to keep getting the innings and be effective in those innings. Could M8ussina pitched effectively for another 5-6-7 seasons or would he be getting crushed and Killing all his other numbers.
If you get out (for whatever reasons) you can't really dog the other guy for sticking around and continuing to dominate when you don't have to take your other hand out of your pocket to count the number of guys in MLB HISTORY that could do it.
Ryan's longevity was unbelievable and he's at the top of the chart in being able to dominate a game.
Mussina can't touch either of those credentials and those are the ones that matter most.
Mussina was a really, really good pitcher and I think he gets voted into the HoF (I'll guess 3rd ballot) and their plaques will be the same size, but Mussina can't touch Ryan in their career accomplishments which IS what makes your HoF case.
You may be asked to turn in your Ryan gear.
also.....you said Mussina's ERA was better, I'm guessing you meant ERA+ (MM 123, NY 112), because Ryan is 245th all-time at 3.19 and MM is 575th all-time at 3.68. Between the ages of 20 and 45, Ryan never posted an ERA over 4.00, MM ewas over 4.00 6 times.