No pitcher in baseball history has ever allowed as many as fourteen earned runs in fewer than three innings pitched . . . until last night. Mere hours after posting Dave Kaufman’s interview with Cleveland Indians manager Manny Acta, the Tribe destroyed the Kansas City Royals by the score of 19-1.
Between the third and part of the fifth inning (two and a third innings), reliever Vin Mazzaro put up this line: 11 hits, 14 earned runs, three walks and two strikeouts. Shortly after the game, Mazzaro was optioned to Triple A. The beleaguered right hander was only in the game because Kyle Davies, the Royals starter, injured his shoulder and couldn’t go on.
Joe Posnanski has more of the details on Mazzaro and his performance’s place in baseball history.
And that’s history: No reliever since World War II has allowed 14 runs in a game — that unlucky soul was the somewhat unfortunately named Les McCrabb, who teammates called “Buster.” Heck, no STARTING PITCHER has allowed 14 runs in a game since 1998 when Mike Oquist did the deed, and it has now only happened three times in the last 60 years.
What’s more amazing is that nobody in baseball history had ever allowed 14 earned runs in fewer than three innings pitched until Mazzaro did it. True, you could argue that Lefty O’Doul’s outing in 1923, when he allowed 16 runs in three innings was worse … except THIRTEEN of those runs were unearned (That’s right: 13 were unearned). It seems pretty clear. Vin Mazzaro — through a combination of bad luck, bad pitching and bad timing — had the worst pitching performance in baseball history.
Mazzaro’s ERA now sits at 22.74. In his only other appearance this season he allowed two runs to the Yankees over four innings of work. Perhaps the only thing more surprising than Mazzaro’s awful game is that Shin-Soo Choo was the only member of the Indians lineup not to get on base against reliever.
And The Rest
Deadspin has an early nineties profile of Lenny Dykstra that should’ve been all of the foreshadowing that we needed.
And while we’re on the topic, did Posada refuse to play catcher during Spring Training?
Bud Selig is still talking about expanded playoffs.
Albert Pujols started last night’s game as the third baseman. No, really. It’s no coincidence that Tony LaRussa was back as manager after missing a half dozen games due to shingles.
In search of the alphabetical batting order.
Why won’t the Rockies trade Ian Stewart?
You might say that Boston is fairly happy with Adrian Gonzalez thus far.
John Lackey of the Boston Red Sox has been placed on the 15 day Disabled List, surprisingly for a right elbow straing and not anything personality related.
The Cincinnati Reds placed Aroldis Chapman on the DL due to shoulder inflammation and not coming close to being able to hit the strike zone.
The Toronto Blue Jays also finally put Adam Lind on the DL after not playing since May 7th.
Historian John Thorn writes about the death of the triple.
New York Mets Minor Leaguer Edgar Ramirez was suspended 50 games for a positive drug test.
The fan that got away.
Ken Rosenthal doesn’t believe that the Blue Jays are keeping Brett Lawrie in Las Vegas for Super Two reasons. Yeah, sure.
Matt Klaassen of FanGraphs looks at how the Detroit Tigers can improve?
Finally, the Washington Nationals’ one dollar night was not the rousing success you might have imagined it would be.