This weekend pitching was king. Baseball fans across the country were welcomed to a three day show put on by starters across the league.
I’ll give you some numbers to show the dominance of the overall team pitching this weekend.
Oh and in case you missed it there were some pretty solid individual showings that I’ll mention as well.
One thing to keep in mind; there were 15 games played each day this weekend, meaning there were 30 starters going a day.
When I mention quality starts I mean those of the 6 innings pitched 3 earned run variety. This works itself out to a 4.50 ERA and some argue against the real quality of that number. For their sake, I’ll offer the number of quality starts and also how many of those were 6 IP 3 ER.
We’ll start with Friday because well, it was the beginning of the weekend. Starters combined to throw 20 quality starts. That means 2/3 of the starts were quality. Oh and remember those “quality” starts that result in a 4.50 ERA? Yeah there were none of those on Friday.
15 of the 30 starters logged 7+ innings; two even decided to go the distance.
Cliff Lee punched out 16 Atlanta Braves in 7 innings. That’s 16 of the 21 outs coming on K’s.
Did I mention he took the loss?
That was thanks to Atlanta’s Derek Lowe, who carried a no hitter into the 7th inning of that contest.
Jaime Garcia of the St. Louis Cardinals saw Derek Lowe’s 6 hitless innings and raised him, carrying a perfect game into the 8th against the Milwaukee Brewers on his way to a 2 hit complete game shutout.
So that was Friday. Pretty hard to outdo that effort, right?
Nay said Justin Verlander and Saturday’s slate of pitchers.
Saturday’s starters threw 16 quality starts, 2 of the 4.50 ERA variety. 11 pitchers managed to go at least 7 innings. While these numbers were a bit down from the previous night, the individual performance of a certain flamethrower made Saturday the talk of the baseball weekend.
Justin Verlander held the Toronto Blue Jays hitless, carrying a perfect game into the 8th inning Saturday. His only blemish came on a walk to rookie catcher J. P. Arencibia.
While this was going on, another pitcher was vying for his own no-hitter. Yovani Gallardo of the Brewers took his no-no into the 8th inning against the Cardinals.
And then there was Sunday. It took the hitters until the final day of the weekend to pick their game up a little, but just a little; the pitchers were able to finish strong. There were 20 quality starts Sunday and only one was 6 IP 3 ER, with 10 pitchers going 7+ innings.
Continuing the weekend tradition, Florida Marlins starter Anibal Sanchez took a no-hitter into the 7th inning of Sunday’s contest against the Washington Nationals.
So let’s recap. On the weekend 56 of the 90 starts were quality. Over a third (36/90) of the starters logged 7+ innings. There were 11 shutouts and only one team reached double digit runs; who else but the Yankees?
Over the weekend teams gave up an average of 3.51 runs a game; take out Sunday and that number drops to 3.32.
On top of all of that, the country was on no hit watch basically all weekend. 5 pitchers took no-no’s into the 7th or later, with Verlander capturing the week’s 2nd no-hitter. This isn’t even including the guy (Cliff Lee) who struck out 16 batters in only 7 innings.
So there it is, the pitcher’s dominated the weekend. I hope you all were able to enjoy a piece of it rooting on your team or watching someone pursue history.
I know I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed that we as fans are this lucky again when next weekend rolls around.