COMPLETE GAME VICTORIES TO CLINCH DIVISION SERIES (Updated with Adam Wainwright)


 (AP Photo/post-dispatch.com, Chris Lee)

(AP Photo/post-dispatch.com, Chris Lee)

 
Way back in 2010, I wrote my first post about pitchers who threw a complete game victory to clinch the Division Series.
It was rare back then, but since this decade began, Cole Hamels, Cliff Lee, Chris Carpenter, Justin Verlander, CC Sabathia and now Adam Wainwright have joined the list.

Maybe it won’t be so rare to join this list.

Let’s update it.

Complete Game Division Series Clinchers
 
 
John Smoltz
1997 ATLANTA BRAVES
Game 3
4-1 victory against Houston Astros

Bobby Jones
2000 NEW YORK METS
Game 4
4-0 victory against San Francisco Giants
 
 

Curt Schilling
2001 ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS
Game 5
2-1 victory against St. Louis Cardinals
Cole Hamels
2010 PHILADELPHIA PHLLIES
Game 3
2-0 victory against Cincinnati Reds

Cliff Lee
2010 TEXAS RANGERS
Game 5
5-1 victory against Tampa Bay Rays

 
 
Chris Carpenter
Game 5
1-0 victory against Philadelphia Phillies
 
Justin Verlander
Game 5
6-0 victory against Oakland Athletics

CC Sabathia
2012 NEW YORK YANKEES
Game 5
3-1 victory against Baltimore Orioles

 WAINWRIGHT46c30a6bf6a9e70fe1396e1998604efef5f192ea

Adam Wainwright
2013 ST. LOUIS CARDINALS

Game 5
6-1 victory against Pittsburgh Pirates

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.

Steve Rogers
1981 MONTREAL EXPOS
Game 5
3-0 victory against Philadelphia Phillies

Jerry Reuss
1981 LOS ANGELES DODGERS
Game 5
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.

If Sonny Gray or Justin Verlander pull off the trick tonight, I’ll have them here tomorrow.
Both Wainwright and Smoltz are the only ones to end a Division Series out of the bullpen AND with a complete game.
 
I figured that out myself. Now YOU know that. You are welcome.
 
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