A few days ago I wrote a post about pitchers who threw a complete game victory to clinch the Division Series.
I felt it was such a rare occurrence that it was worth noting.
Now it has happened twice in three days and Cliff Lee has added his name to the list. It just goes to show you, I shouldn’t write lists like this until the round is OVER!
Let’s update it.
1997 ATLANTA BRAVES
4-1 victory against Houston Astros
2000 NEW YORK METS
4-0 victory against San Francisco Giants
2001 ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS
2-1 victory against St. Louis Cardinals
2010 PHILADELPHIA PHLLIES
2-0 victory against Cincinnati Reds
2010 TEXAS RANGERS
5-1 victory against Tampa Bay Rays
The 2001 Series didn’t end with Schilling on the mound getting the last out. The series ended with a walk off single by Tony Womack.
For sticklers of details, they played the Division Series in 1981 as well and two more complete games clinched series THAT year.
1981 MONTREAL EXPOS
3-0 victory against Philadelphia Phillies
1981 LOS ANGELES DODGERS
4-0 victory against Houston Astros
But while relievers were being used more frequently then, the whole specialization of EVERY bullpen role (and the cheapening of the save) didn’t come around until the late 1980s.
Maybe we’ll update it next year if there is any new names to add.
Little side note… Cliff Lee is the first person to throw a complete game to clinch an AMERICAN LEAGUE Division Series.
ChaChing this off season!