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MLB Notebook: Verlander and Weaver, great at 29
MLB Notebook: Verlander and Weaver, great at 29
By Roger Schlueter
Since the beginning of the 2009 season, Justin Verlander owns the most victories in the Majors, while Jered Weaver is tied for third. Among pitchers with at least 100 decisions in these four years, Verlander's winning percentage is the second best, while Weaver's is the third best. Among pitchers with at least 700 innings since '09, Weaver's ERA is the fourth lowest, while Verlander's is the sixth lowest and, under those same conditions, they are first and second (Verlander leading) in WHIP.
For both of these pitchers, this four-year span covers their age-26 through age-29 seasons, so let's throw out one more historically-bent comparison. Since 1920, 370 pitchers have accumulated at least 700 innings through their age-29 season. Among those 370, Verlander and Weaver are in the top 25 in WHIP, winning percentage, strikeout-to-walk ratio, lowest hits per nine and ERA+.
The only other pitchers to a have a top-25 spot in all five of these selected categories are Sandy Koufax, Greg Maddux, Pedro Martinez and Johan Santana.
900+ K's in age-26 through age-29 seasons
In Detroit's 7-2 win over New York, Verlander tied a career high with 14 strikeouts, walked one and allowed eight hits and two runs over eight innings.
Over his past four seasons (his age-26 through age-29 seasons), Verlander has a Major League-leading 904 strikeouts. He is one of 14 pitchers since 1901 to have at least 900 strikeouts from their age-26 season through their age-29 season.
Verlander is the sixth pitcher this season to strike out at least 14 and issue no more than one walk, joining teammate Max Scherzer, Dan Haren, Matt Cain, Francisco Liriano and Yovani Gallardo. The last season to see at least six such performances was 2004, when there were nine.
Verlander's WHIP stands at 0.984 and he owns a strikeout rate of 8.86. Last season, he finished the year with a WHIP of 0.920 and a K/9 of 8.96. Three pitchers in baseball history have had consecutive seasons in which they qualified for the ERA title and had a WHIP below 1.00 and a K/9 at or above 8.00. Koufax did it in four straight seasons, from 1963-66. Santana did it in three straight (2004-06) and Pedro Martinez did it in 1999 and 2000.
Verlander is the first pitcher to fan at least 14 Yankees since Martinez notched 17 K's in a one-hitter on Sept. 10, 1999. He is the third Tigers pitcher since 1918 to have that many against New York, joining Hal Newhouser (May 27, 1943) and Jim Bunning (June 20, 1958).
Weaver threw a four-hit shutout with nine strikeouts and no walks and improved to 15-1 on the season, as the Angels blanked the Athletics, 4-0.
Weaver, who leads the Majors in ERA (2.13), WHIP (0.916) and victories, has won nine consecutive starts -- the longest streak this season and the longest since Verlander recorded wins in 12 consecutive starts in 2011. The streak is the second longest for an Angels pitcher, behind Chuck Finley's 10-game run in 1997.
No qualifying pitcher has finished a season with an ERA and WHIP as low as Weaver's current marks since Martinez in 2000 (1.74 ERA, 0.737 WHIP). No pitcher has led the Majors in wins, ERA and WHIP since Santana in 2006.
Miguel Cabrera hit his 28th home run and drove in his 92nd run, while Prince Fielder hit his 19th homer and collected his 80th RBI.
The last season to see a pair of Tigers players each have at least 80 RBIs through the team's first 109 games was in 1993, when Cecil Fielder had 90 and Mickey Tettleton had 81.
Tillman worked 7 1/3 innings of five-hit, one-run ball and picked up the win as the Orioles defeated the Mariners, 3-1.
Tillman, who is 5-1 with a 2.38 ERA in six starts this season, has faced the Mariners three times in his career. In those three starts against the franchise that drafted and then traded him to Baltimore, Tillman is 3-0 with a 0.83 ERA.
Twins 10-run inning
The Twins used a 10-run second inning to help them coast to a 14-3 victory over the Indians.
Minnesota hit three homers in the inning, including back-to-back shots from Josh Willingham (his 29th of the season) and Justin Morneau (his first of two on the night).
The 10 runs in the inning were the most for Minnesota since scoring 10 in the seventh inning of a 23-2 win on June 4, 2002, also against the Indians.
Revere went 4-for-5 to extend his hitting streak to 20 games. He is the first Twins player to hit safely in 20 straight since Torii Hunter hit in 23 straight games in 2007.
Revere (hitting .388 during his run) is the seventh player this season to hit safely in 20 consecutive games, joining Jose Reyes (24 games -- active), Robinson Cano (23), Michael Brantley (22), Pablo Sandoval (20), Angel Pagan (20) and Adam Jones (20).
Bedard (seven innings) and two relievers combined on a two-hit shutout, as the Pirates beat the visiting Diamondbacks, 4-0.
Pittsburgh owns the Majors' best home record (34-16), as well as the best home ERA (2.32).
The Red Sox collected eight doubles (the second time this season they've had eight in a game) and beat the Rangers, 9-2.
Boston has a Major League-leading 243 doubles this season, through 110 games. The all-time record for doubles in a season is 376, by the 2008 Rangers. That club had 253 through 110 games.
The Brewers defeated the Reds, 6-3, behind Gallardo's seven innings of one-run ball. Gallardo picked up his 10th win of the year -- the fourth straight season the pitcher has reached double digits in victories.
Gallardo is the seventh pitcher in franchise history to win 10 or more in at least four consecutive years. The other six Brewers pitchers to do this were Ben Sheets (2001-05), Scott Karl (1996-99), Teddy Higuera (1985-88), Moose Haas (1979-83), Mike Caldwell (1978-83) and Jim Slaton (1973-77).
Street pitched the final inning of a combined five-hit shutout and picked up his 19th save, as the Padres blanked the Cubs, 2-0. Street now owns a 0.79 ERA and a 0.559 WHIP.
The lowest ERA ever for a pitcher with at least 20 saves is 0.61 by Dennis Eckersley in 1990. Eckersley also owns the lowest WHIP ever for a pitcher who completed a season with at least 20 saves. In 1989, he finished at 0.607.
For the ERA crown, Street has some competition in Tampa Bay's Fernando Rodney, who is currently sporting a 0.71 ERA with 32 saves.
Roger Schlueter is the senior researcher for MLB Productions. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.