Pressly sets scoreless record with stylish play

May 18th, 2019

BOSTON -- Astros reliever likes to fly under the radar, which he did for most of his career with the Twins. He certainly doesn’t like talking about himself, but he didn’t have much of a choice on Friday night after setting a Major League record with his 39th consecutive scoreless outing.

Pressly pitched a 1-2-3 eighth inning in the Astros’ 3-1 win over the Red Sox, extending his string of scoreless outings. He surpassed Craig Kimbrel, who had 38 consecutive appearances without allowing a run in 2011 with the Braves.

“I just try to put it back in my mind as far as I possibly can,” Pressly said when asked about the record. “My job is to go out there and get people out, and throw up zeros as many times as I possibly can, and put this team in a position to win, and that’s all I was thinking about.”

Astros manager AJ Hinch said Pressly’s teammates held a quick ceremony to recognize him after the game.

“They’re excited for him,” Hinch said. “We knew it was coming and it’s been talked about it a little bit. Our team does a good job of recognizing that stuff in a little brief team event after the game, especially after wins. It’s become routine for him to come in, have a clean inning, have a scoreless inning. It’s pretty remarkable to do it in the spot that he did here obviously with Kimbrel having played a lot of games here. A special moment for him.”

Pressly has been terrific since being acquired at the Trade Deadline last season and he hasn’t given up a run since Aug. 10, 2018, against the Mariners. His scoreless streak spans 38 innings, which is a franchise record. It’s the longest streak by a pitcher since Brad Ziegler’s 39-inning streak in 2008.

What’s more, Pressly has been scoreless in 31 consecutive road games, which is the longest active streak in baseball. He’s yet to walk a batter this season and he ranks second in WHIP (0.45) among all relief pitchers. Pressly was originally selected by the Red Sox in the 2007 Draft but was plucked away in the Rule 5 Draft by the Twins in 2012.

“It’s always fun coming here; it’s Fenway,” Pressly said. “It’s always a playoff atmosphere and I played with a lot of guys over there as well. It’s fun facing [Xander Bogaerts] and [Jackie Bradley Jr.], and all those guys. It’s fun seeing them out there and doing their thing as well.”