Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Zack Greinke held the Arizona Diamondbacks to one run over six innings Friday, allowing two runs or fewer in a 16th consecutive regular-season start.
Per Elias Sports Bureau (via ESPN.com), Greinke is just the second pitcher who debuted after 1900 to piece together such a streak, joining Ferdie Schupp, who had exactly 16 consecutive starts allowing two runs or fewer between the 1916 and 1917 seasons as a member of the New York Giants.
Of course, Schupp played during the dead-ball era, when runs were at a premium. His 1917 New York Giants, for example, scored 4.12 runs per game and allowed a meager 2.97. That team was actually an offensive powerhouse, as the eight National League clubs averaged just 3.53 runs per game in 1917.
Greinke is also pitching in a pitcher-friendly era, but the major league average across all 30 teams last season was 4.17 runs per game. While that figure was an even 4.00 runs for the 16 National League teams, the scoring still easily outweighs the 3.53 runs averaged by NL clubs in 1917.
Greinke's streak—which started with a two-run performance against the New York Yankees on July 30, 2013—has included three starts allowing no runs, six allowing one run and seven two-run outings.
He's gone a minimum of five innings in all 16 starts, only once failing to toss six innings. The lone five-inning start—Sept. 22 against the San Diego Padres—was actually one of Greinke's better performances during the streak, but he was taken out early to stay fresh for the playoffs.
Speaking of which, Greinke held his opponent to two runs in each of his three postseason starts last year, meaning that his streak is actually at 19 games, if you count the playoffs.
The 30-year-old right-hander can grab sole possession of a small piece of history in his next outing, as no pitcher who debuted after 1900 has strung together 17 consecutive starts allowing two runs of fewer.
That next outing is scheduled for Wednesday against the Philadelphia Phillies, and Greinke will likely be up against left-hander Cole Hamels, who is expected to make his 2014 debut after dealing with a biceps injury, per The Philadelphia Inquirer's Matt Gelb.
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