11 pitchers besides Maddux and Pedro who deserve to be immortalized as stats
11 pitchers besides Maddux who deserve to be a stat
Invented by Jason Lukehart several years ago, "The Maddux," has caught on as a term to describe an outing in which a starter throws a shutout in fewer than 100 pitches. It's only been pulled off four times this season -- twice by Shelby Miller and once by Drew Hutchison and Mark Buehrle.
Recently, "The Pedro" was introduced by Joe Sheehan in Sports Illustrated, this being the type of dominating start where the pitcher strikes out 15+ batters, walks none, but doesn't finish the game. Only Corey Kluber's 18-strikeout game and Michael Pineda (16 K) and Chris Archer (15 K) meet those criteria this season.
But why restrict ourselves to simply two ways to describe a pitcher's start when there are countless others to choose from? The history of the sport is littered with singular individuals who can define an outing. Here are 11 of them:
The Nolan Ryan: A no-hitter thrown over the age of 40.
Ryan pulled this off twice, while Randy Johnson and Warren Spahn are the only others to do it once. It's why some believe that Ryan is actually the inspiration for the ageless, sexy vampires in "Vampire Diaries."
The Other Nolan Ryan: Using your arms for something other than pitching.
The Harvey Haddix: Losing a no-hitter, and the game, in extra innings.
The Randy Johnson: Throwing a perfect game with a mullet.
So far, Johnson is the sole pitcher to pull this one off in the recorded history of mankind.
The Armando Benitez: Blowing a save, but telling the press you did your job.
The Tim Wakefield: Surrender a crushing home run to your team's greatest rival.
The Jose Mesa: Getting the save despite allowing one or more runs to score. Mesa's 4.36 ERA is the highest ERA for a pitcher with at least 150 saves in baseball history. Mesa has 321.
The Ryan Webb: Finishing the game without allowing a run while never getting the save.
Webb is the current all-time leader in games finished without a save at 90. 65 of those appearances have been of the scoreless variety.
The Bartolo Colon: Bringing pure joy and wonder to the game. And/or, throwing fastballs 90 percent of the time.
The Mike Mussina: Pitching six or fewer innings while giving up three or more runs and getting the win. Mike Mussina is the all-time leader with 38 of these -- one ahead of Tim Wakefield.
The Jamie Moyer: Pitching until literally forever.
The Bobo Newsome: Throwing a complete game while walking more than 10 batters. Newsome pulled off this feat a shocking six times. The last pitcher to be allowed to do this was Mike Dunne in 1988. Like Joe DiMaggio's hitting streak and Jon Lester's aversion to the pickoff, this is one that may never be touched.
But maybe, just maybe, there's a manager out there who will let a pitcher go 9 full innings despite walking a baker's dozen on the last day of the season. Just to add a statistical wrinkle. We can only hope.