Yovani's scoreless streak at 29 1/3 frames
BALTIMORE -- Right-hander Yovani Gallardo takes the mound each start with the intention of giving up no runs. For the past 29 1/3 innings -- including the six he threw in the Rangers' 2-0 win over the Orioles on Thursday -- he's done just that.
Gallardo has not given up a run in four consecutive games, and his streak of scoreless innings is the fourth longest in Rangers' history, according to STATS Inc. On Thursday he allowed just two hits and three walks while striking out two.
The craziest thing about the streak is that he's done it without some of his best stuff, which was the case in Baltimore.
"I think the slider, I just couldn't command it today," Gallardo said. "When you find yourself in that situation, I mixed in the curveball a little bit more. I think I had a pretty good curveball. You still have to find a way, make pitches and attack the zone whether you are ahead or behind in the count."
The streak almost came to an end in the third inning, when Gallardo gave up back-to-back singles, then a two-out, nine-pitch walk to Adam Jones, but he proceeded to strike out Chris Davis on four pitches.
"Facing [the Orioles'] three and four hitters, I think I [got] myself into some trouble where both guys could do some damage," Gallardo said. "I threw some pretty good curveballs to Davis and was able to get that final out of the inning."
Following that jam, Gallardo did not face a batter over the minimum for the rest of his outing, giving up just one walk in the sixth to Davis before picking him off just minutes later.
Gallardo credits his scoreless streak to both his teammates' defense as well as his ability to command both sides of the plate. He logged his seventh quality start over his last eight outings on Thursday, and has gone 4-0 with a 0.88 ERA since his start against the Yankees on May 24.
He does not think about the streak, although he would like to ride it out as long as possible. He has a ways to go for the record, held by Kenny Rogers, who went 39 innings without giving up a run in 1995.
"We like him on the mound and what he's capable of doing," manager Jeff Banister said. "He probably didn't have his best stuff in this run but really was able to move the ball around. He kept these guys off balance. He didn't give them any real good pitches to hit. He had to battle through some innings, too. He had to make some big pitches early and through the middle innings. It was really an outstanding job."