The Twins incomprehensible excursion into the doldrums continues today, with yet another loss, 3-1, to the Pale Hose of Chicago. What can you say? Seven hits – one more that the Sox. One double. (The Southsiders got 4 doubles in their 6 hits.) A good pitching effort wasted. Duffy falls to 0-2, despite a 2.60 ERA. Woe, woe, woe is us.
In the midst of this seemingly unending death march of a season, we note a small ray of sunshine falling upon the wings of the circling buzzards.
For Lo, young Tyler Duffy has struck out 4 men in an inning.
All right, all right, it’s not that amazing. It’s been done before. In fact it’s been done 33 times in the American league, and 44 times in the senior circuit. In fact it’s been done recently by one of our own, Francisco Liriano, 5 June 2012. But still.
Duffy opened the seventh by striking out Brett Larie, and then struck out Avisail Garcia. But wait! The ball skips away, bouncing off the plate and away from our catcher (Centeno?) and when the dust settles Garcia resides at first. Well, then, Navarro doubles, and Garcia scores, making it 3-1. Duffy comes back to strike out Austin “Action” Jackson, for his third strike out of the inning. He then intentionally walks Adam Eaton, and then strikes out Jimmy Rollins (#4) to end the inning. One inning, four strike outs. All told, Duffy struck out 9 in 7 innings of work. In a losing effort. But still.
In case you are wondering, no one has ever struck out 5 in an inning. It seems to me like that should have been done, back in the early days of the game. But no. Scripture says, no.
Other Twins who have accomplished the four K feat: Well, Walter Johnson (we get to claim him,) Liriano, as mentioned, Scott Baker, and Phil Hughes (when with the Yankees.)
Chuck Finley (with the Angels and then with the Clevelanders) did this 3 times. That’s kind of amazing.
Anyway. Another loss. But perhaps four strikeouts in an inning… even though it was in a loss… perhaps that’s a sign that fickle fortune… perhaps…