Anibal Sanchez Strikes out 17 Batters to Break Tigers' Record for 9-Inning Game
According to CBS Sports' Eye on Baseball, that's the most any Detroit pitcher has thrown in one game:
17 strikeouts for Anibal Sanchez tonight. Tigers franchise record for 9-inning game.— Eye on Baseball (@EyeOnBaseball) April 27, 2013
That's quite an accomplishment when you consider some of the guys who have stepped on the mound for Detroit. Sanchez is now in the record book ahead of guys like Mickey Lolich, Jack Morris, Denny McLain and teammate Justin Verlander. Lolich was the previous record holder, striking out 16 batters on two different occasions in 1969.
Sanchez went eight innings in the win, giving up five hits and a walk while throwing a whopping 121 pitches. He was then replaced by rookie Bruce Rondon, who added a strikeout in the ninth.
Throwing eight shutout innings is no easy feat against a team like the Braves. Although Atlanta is 11th in the majors in runs and 16th in batting average, the team is second in slugging percentage. With guys like Dan Uggla and the Upton brothers, there's always the risk of one mistake going 400-plus feet.
Sanchez made sure to keep the ball on the ground, as he only allowed one fly ball out through his eight innings. Uggla and Freddie Freeman each struck out four times.
As good as this performance was, it's arguably not even the best of Sanchez's career. As a member of the Florida Marlins, he threw a no-hitter against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Sept. 6, 2006. Although, he only had six strikeouts on that night.
With this performance, Sanchez is just building upon what has been a very good 2013 season. The win runs his record to 3-1 with an impressive 1.34 ERA.
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