BY JERRY TAPP
Did Milwaukee Brewers fans get a peek at the future of their pitching staff when Freddy Peralta made his major League debut on Sunday by pitching one-hit ball and striking out 13 in 5.2 innings of work?
Peralta became only the fifth pitcher in MLB history to fan 13 or more batters in his first career game. The others:
JR Richard, Houston, 9-5-1971 (struck out 15)
Karl Spooner, Brooklyn, 9-22-1954 (struck out 15)
Stephen Strasburg, Washington, 6-8-2010 (struck out 14)
Cliff Melton, New York Giants, 4-25-1937 (struck out 13)
Peralta also broke the Brewers record for most strikeouts in a debut for the team. It was previously held by Steve Woodard who fanned 12 in his debut with the team on July 28, 1997 in a game versus the Toronto Blue Jays.
The 21-year-old Peralta, who is just a month shy of his 22nd birthday, became the 38th pitcher in baseball history to strike out 13 or more batters in a game before the age of 22. His 13 Ks at the age of 21-343 days, was the 69th time a pitcher under 22 had fanned 13 or more in a game.
Kerry Wood holds the MLB record for most strikeouts in a game by a pitcher under the age of 22. He had 20. Bill Gullickson and Bob Feller each had games with 18 strikeouts before 22, while Franck Tanana, Vida Blue and Feller (again) had 17 in a game before their 22 birthday.
Of the 38 pitchers who had 13+ strikeouts in a game before 22, Dwight Gooden did it seven times along with Bob Feller. Kerry Wood did it five times, and Frank Tanana, Jose Fernandez, Dennis Eckersley and Vida Blue did it three times each.
What might be even more amazing about Peralta’s performance, however, is that he became only the eighth pitcher in MLB history to have 13 or more strikeouts in a game with less than six innings pitched. It means that of the 17 batters he retired in the game, 13 came via a strikeout, a pretty remarkable feat.
Here are the eight pitchers who had 13 or more K’s in a game where they pitched less than six innings.
Max Scherzer, 14 strikeouts, 5.2 IP, May 20, 2010
Freddy Peralta, 13 strikeouts, 5.2 IP, May 13, 2018
Eduardo Rodriguez, 13 strikeouts, 5.1 IP, September 25, 2016
Jose Fernandez, 13 strikeouts, 5.2 IP, April 6, 2016
Alex Cobb, 13 strikeouts, 4.2 IP, May 10, 2013
Jeff Samardzija, 13 strikeouts, 5.2 IP, April 7, 2013
Zack Greinke, 13 strikeouts, 5.0 IP, September 25, 2012
Kevin Appier, 13 strikeouts, 5.2 IP, May 25, 1994
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