MLB Notebook: One run is often enough for Bucs
Pirates' four 1-0 victories this early in season are the most in 95 years
The Major League record for most innings pitched in a shutout game is 18, a mark shared by four hurlers. One of the four, the Senators' Walter Johnson, put together his historic performance in the middle of a notable run for Washington in May 1918.
Over the course of seven games between May 11-19, the Sens won four 1-0 contests, with The Big Train responsible for the first two (with the second of the two coming in that 18-inning workout). After Johnson's two efforts, Jim Shaw threw a three-hit shutout to beat Eddie Cicotte and the White Sox on May 17, and then two days later, Doc Ayers went the full 12 in a 1-0 victory over Stan Coveleski and the Indians. This particular stretch gave the Senators five 1-0 wins as part of their 13-14 overall record.
With pitchers such as Jeanmar Gomez, Francisco Liriano, Jeff Locke, Mark Melancon and Jason Grilli doing their best combined impressions of Johnson, Ayers and Shaw, the 2013 Pittsburgh Pirates have produced four 1-0 victories over their past 11 games.
Thursday, for the second time in their past three games, the Bucs got an 11th-inning hit to help them defeat the Tigers, 1-0. In this game, Russell Martin's RBI single in the bottom of the 11th clinched Pittsburgh's fourth 1-0 victory of the season. The total of four 1-0 wins -- through 54 team games -- is tied for the third most for any club since 1916, and is the most for any Pirates team since '16. The only two teams since that year with more through their first 54 games are the '18 Red Sox and '18 Senators, with five each.
Two Tigers shine in loss
Detroit starter Doug Fister fanned 12 Bucs batters in a no-decision, making him the fifth Tigers pitcher this season -- following Anibal Sanchez, Justin Verlander, Max Scherzer and Rick Porcello -- to have a game with at least 11 K's. This is the only season since 1916 during which five Tigers pitchers have had at least 11 strikeouts in a game. The most recent team before the Tigers to do this was the 2002 Yankees, with Roger Clemens, Andy Pettitte, Mike Mussina, Ted Lilly and Orlando Hernandez.
Miguel Cabrera had a pair of two-base hits in the Detroit loss, with the first of the two giving him 400 in his career. Cabrera is the third player in history -- joining Ducky Medwick (453) and Albert Pujols (426) -- to have at least 400 doubles through his age-30 season.
Wood stingy on mound, contributes at plate
Cubs southpaw Travis Wood improved to 5-3, thanks in part to a six-inning, five-hit effort during which he yielded just two runs to the White Sox.
In nine of his starts this season, Wood has gone at least six innings and finished with more innings than hits allowed. Those nine tie him with Yu Darvish, Matt Harvey, Felix Hernandez and Mike Minor for the most in the Majors.
Wood is the seventh Cubs left-hander since 1916 to have -- through the team's first 52 games -- at least nine outings of six-plus innings and more innings thrown than hits allowed. Only Lefty Tyler, who had 10 such games in '18, and Hippo Vaughn, with 10 in '19, had more.
Wood also hit a grand slam in the contest. He is the first left-handed-throwing, right-side-swinging pitcher to hit a slam since Shawn Estes in 2000, and the only Cubs pitcher since 1916 to do this.
Ellsbury swipes five
Jacoby Ellsbury stole five bases in Boston's 9-2 win over Philadelphia. His five set a Red Sox record, surpassing the mark of four that he had already shared with Jerry Remy.
Ellsbury is the first player to steal five bags in a game since Carl Crawford had six on May 3, 2009. Overall, since 1916, Ellsbury is the 21st player with at least five in a game. And he is one of eight players since '16 to have a game in which he collected five steals and reached safely at least five times. He is the first to do it since Crawford in '09.
CarGo's big night
The Rockies' Carlos Gonzalez reached safely four times (two walks and two hits) and stole three bases in a 7-5 loss to the Astros.
The game marked the sixth time this season Gonzalez had reached safely at least four times, tying him with Joey Votto, Norichika Aoki and Chris Davis for the third most in the Majors. Cabrera leads with nine such games, while Joe Mauer has seven.
Since the start of the 2010 season, Gonzalez is one of three players to have collected at least 200 extra-base hits and 75 steals. Ryan Braun and Andrew McCutchen are the other two.
Subway Series stars
Dillon Gee struck out a career-high 12 batters, issued no walks and picked up the win, as the Mets took their fourth straight against the Yankees.
Gee was the third Mets pitcher this month to have a line that featured at least 12 K's and no walks, joining Harvey on May 7 and Shaun Marcum on May 26. Before this year, the Mets never had three such performances in a season. Gee's 12 K's were also the most for a Mets pitcher against the Yanks. The previous high had been 11, by Estes on June 15, 2002.
Over the final three games of their four contests with the Yankees, Mets pitchers did not issue a walk and fanned 34 batters, including 14 Thursday. The streak of no-walk games is tied for the longest in franchise history, with this run marking the fourth time it has been done. In 1968, the three consecutive no-walk games featured 21 strikeouts, and in 1994, when the Mets had two three-game runs, the first (in May) included 20 strikeouts and the second (in July) saw Mets pitchers combine for 18 K's.
The Mets are the first team since the Red Sox on Sept. 10, 1999, to have at least 14 strikeouts and no walks in a game against the Yanks. In that contest in '99, Pedro Martinez fanned 17 in a one-hitter.
Roger Schlueter is senior researcher for MLB Productions. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.