Yes He Cain

Matt Cain threw the very first perfect game in San Francisco Giants history tonight.

When a pitcher throws a perfect game there are elements beyond his control that have to go his way in order for it to happen. Sometimes, these moments are plentiful. Sometimes they are rare. Cain’s perfect performance tonight required a couple of remarkable defensive plays, but outside of an amazing catch by Gregor Blanco to lead off the seventh inning, the right handed pitcher, who has previously recorded three one hitters and has taken a no-hitter into the seventh inning five times in his career, was in control and absolutely dominant throughout tonight’s 10-0 victory over the Houston Astros.

This was the Blanco catch:

This was Cain’s reaction:

Over 125 pitches (86 strikes, 39 balls), Cain struck out a perfect game record and career high 14 batters tonight. That’s a lot of pitches, but it’s also a lot of strike outs, and quite frankly, you don’t get one without the other. Cain’s dominance is perhaps best seen in his game score of 101 (the second best ever recorded for a nine inning game), or by the fact that he recorded 14 swinging strikes.

Or maybe his velocity chart, which reveals that Cain kept a consistent speed on his fastball throughout the game.

To be fair, I don’t think there is anything as simple as a game score, a count of swinging strikes or a chart that can properly convey how well Cain pitched tonight. It simply must be seen. As much as I enjoy baseball, I rarely count myself privileged to have actually watched a game.

Tonight’s exceptional effort was an exception.

Comments (22)

  1. Even if it was against the Astros, that has to be one of the most dominating pitching performances of all time. Those 14 K tied Koufax for the most ever in a perfect game. And what a catch by Blanco to preserve it.

    • Yeah lets be fair and give credit to Koufax. Should read tied a perfect game record rather than “struck out a perfect game record”. Apparently 125 is the most pitches ever throw during a perfecto. Hell of an effort!

  2. Outstanding performance by Cain, truly outstanding.

  3. Cain’s FIP was -0.06 tonight… that is incredible…

  4. What was the higher Game Score? Kerry Wood?

  5. Matt Cain also had the highest game score of 2012 before this start, too (tied with Humber at 96).

  6. I want gifs from that Sandy Koufax perfecto.

  7. i bet jetpack guy’s services become increasingly in demand in McCovey Cove… maybe Timmy could use some of that rocket fuel…

  8. Congrats Matt Cain, well done.


    As a Northern California Giants fan, I could not have described this game any better.

    Thanks for great baseball analysis, perspective and appreciation. Day in and day out.

  9. Didnt he hit a homer also?

  10. Alternate headlines:

    All Cain, No Gain

    Cain Man

    Make It Cain

    Runaway Cain

  11. I have Johan and Cain on my fantasy baseball team.

    I benched Johan during his no-hitter.
    I traded Cain the day before his perfect game.

    I’m the greatest fantasy player ever!

    • But who did you get in trade for Cain?

      • Cain and Michael Young for Prince Fielder.

        I think I won the deal, but I still should have waited to do it until after Cain plays the Astros.

        • You didnt win that deal.

          I picked up Humber on the waiver wire before his perfection, and had Cain starting last night too!

          I know, I know, you’re all jealy…

  12. Parkes, do you seriously have to post every little thing the Giants do ever?

  13. I started watching the game in the fourth and I didn’t move from my spot from the sixth inning onward. Just amazing stuff. In terms of excitement for me, it beat out the Morrow *almost* no-hitter by a few Altuves.

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