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Scoreless innings streak.

When I was young, I was lucky enough that my parents took me to many sporting events. The retiring of Sandy Koufax's, Jackie Robinson's and Roy Campanella's numbers was a day I'll never forget.

Another event was a game Don Drysdale pitched on his way to breaking the scoreless inning streak. It was the game that Drysdale hit Giants batter Dick Dietz with the bases loaded, but the umpire ruled Dietz didn't attempt to get out of the way. Dietz went on to make an out.

Also I believe Orel Hershiser broke Drysdale's record in a game in which a runner going into second base interfered with the shortstop, causing the umpire to rule a double play, which prevented a run from scoring.

It's amazing that an umpire's call extended both streaks. Can you list each pitcher's games pitched during his streak?

Your memory is good. On May 31, 1968, Don Drysdale entered the ninth inning against the San Francisco Giants with a string of 44 consecutive scoreless innings. He loaded the bases in that ninth frame with two walks and a single. Dick Dietz stepped into the batter's box with no outs and Drysdale hit Dietz with a pitch on a 2-2 count. Umpire Harry Wendelstedt refused to allow Dietz to take first base, claiming that Dietz did not attempt to avoid being struck by the ball.

Drysdale proceeded to retire Dietz on a short fly to left, and the next two batters on a force out at the plate and a pop fly to the first baseman. Drysdale's streak extended to 58.2 consecutive innings without allowing a run.

Orel Hershiser's streak was at 40 innings on September 23, 1988, when he worked the third inning with one out and runners on first and third for the Giants. Batter Ernest Riles hit a groundball to second base, and the Dodgers failed to turn the double play and a run scored. Umpire Bob Engel then ruled that Giants baserunner Brett Butler went out of the baseline to interfere with the Dodgers shortstop. Butler and Riles were ruled out on the play and the run was negated.

Hershiser continued his streak to a record-setting 59 consecutive scoreless innings.


Date     Team         IP    R    H    BB    SO

May 14   Cubs        9.0    0    2     3     7

May 18   Astros      9.0    0    5     2     6

May 22   Cardinals   9.0    0    5     0     8

May 26   Astros      9.0    0    6     2     6

May 31   Giants      9.0    0    6     7     2

June 4   Pirates     9.0    0    3     0     8

On June 8, Drysdale shut out the Phillies for the first 4.1 innings
before surrendering a run. During those innings, he struck out four
while giving up one hit and one walk.


On Aug. 30, Hershiser pitched nine innings and held the Expos
scoreless over the final four frames to begin his scoreless
skein. In those four innings, Hershiser allowed one hit and
one walk while striking out four.

Date       Team      IP    R    H    BB    SO

Sept. 5    Braves   9.0    0    4     1     8

Sept. 10   Reds     9.0    0    7     3     8

Sept. 14   Braves   9.0    0    6     2     8

Sept. 19   Astros   9.0    0    4     0     5

Sept. 23   Giants   9.0    0    5     2     2

Sept. 28   Padres  10.0    0    4     1     3

Although postseason stats do not count in regular-season accomplishments, on Oct. 4, Hershiser worked the first game of the NLCS and held the Mets scoreless through the first 8.1 innings. He allowed six hits and one walk while fanning six batters.

Kenny Crawford

Nipomo, CA
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Title Annotation:FANS SPEAK OUT
Author:Crawford, Kenny
Publication:Baseball Digest
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 1, 2013
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