Friday, June 12, 2015

Teammates with Madduxes in the same season

John Smoltz is eating that baseball out of frustration over not
having thrown a Maddux in 1993, like his teammates did.
Just a bit earlier this season, on May 25 and June 3, Blue Jays teammates Drew Hutchison and Mark Buehrle each pitched a Maddux. Follow Buehrle's performance, a Toronto fan with the Twitter handle James G asked me what the shortest span between two Madduxes for one team is. I knew that Zane Smith and Maddux himself had each thrown Madduxes in back-to-back starts, with Smith's five days apart and Greg's six days apart. That meant the nine-day span for Hutchison and Buehrle wasn't the record. Two teammates each throwing a Maddux is different than one guy throwing two of them though, so I set out to find out which teammates had each thrown one in the shortest span.

(Most all of you reading this already know what a Maddux is, but for the few who come across this without knowing, it's a shutout in fewer than 100 pitches. The original post, which has all sorts of leaders and fun facts, can be found here.)

Updated: August 31, 2016

Since MLB began tracking pitch counts in 1988, there have been 34 sets of teammates who threw Madduxes in the same season as one another. Here they all are in chronological order:

  • 1988 Royals: Ted Power (June 2) and Charlie Leibrandt (June 15)
  • 1988 Giants: Kelly Downs (June 7 and June 24), Terry Mulholland (July 5), Don Robinson (August 10), and Rick Reuschel (August 17)
  • 1988 Cubs: Jamie Moyer (June 3) and Jeff Pico (August 27)
  • 1988 Red Sox: Roger Clemens (April 24 and September 10) and Mike Boddicker (September 29)
  • 1988 Blue Jays: Dave Stieb (May 31 and September 30) and Jimmy Key (September 28) 
  • 1988 Dodgers: Tim Leary (August 2) and Orel Hershiser (September 19)
  • 1989 Angels: Bert Blyleven (April 16 and July 18) and Chuck Finley (May 26) 
  • 1989 Reds: Rick Mahler (May 12) and Tom Browning (June 10)
  • 1989 Mets: Sid Fernandez (August 1) and Frank Viola (August 28)
  • 1990 Orioles: Bob Milacki (June 30) and Ben McDonald (July 21)
  • 1990 Angels: Jim Abbott (July 13) and Kirk McCaskill (August 28)
  • 1990 Pirates: Zane Smith (September 5) and Doug Drabek (September 30)
  • 1991 Pirates: Zane Smith (May 3, May 29, and September 21) and Doug Drabek (May 27)
  • 1991 Brewers: Jaime Navarro (May 24) and Chris Bosio (September 17)
  • 1992 Brewers: Jaime Navarro (July 27 and August 16) and Chris Bosio (September 24)
  • 1993 Braves: Tom Glavine (May 19 and July 1), Steve Avery (June 7), and Greg Maddux (August 15)
  • 1993 Mariners: Chris Bosio (April 22) and Dave Fleming (June 12)
  • 1993 Tigers: Mike Moore (August 23) and John Doherty (September 24)
  • 1994 Reds: Tom Browning (April 17) and John Smiley (May 2)
  • 1997 Phillies: Curt Schilling (July 2) and Mike Grace (September 2)
  • 1998 Dodgers: Darren Dreifort (May 22) and Ismael Valdez (June 27)
  • 2000 Mariners: Aaron Sele (April 12) and John Halama (May 17)
  • 2000 Braves: Greg Maddux (September 7 and September 13) and Tom Glavine (September 25)
  • 2003 A's: Mark Mulder (April 24) and Tim Hudson (August 11)
  • 2005 Blue Jays: Roy Halladay (May 29) and Josh Towers (August 12)
  • 2005 Cardinals: Chris Carpenter (June 14) and Jason Marquis (August 27)
  • 2006 Mariners: Jamie Moyer (June 2) and Felix Hernandez (August 28)
  • 2009 Cardinals: Joel Pineiro (May 19) and Chris Carpenter (September 7)
  • 2011 Pirates: Paul Maholm (May 28) and Jeff Karstens (July 15)
  • 2012 Phillies: Joel Blanton (May 3) and Kyle Kendrick (May 26)
  • 2013 Nationals: Jordan Zimmermann (April 26) and Stephen Strasburg (August 11)
  • 2014 Indians: Corey Kluber (July 30) and Carlos Carrasco (September 17)
  • 2015 Blue Jays: Drew Hutchison (May 25) and Mark Buehrle (June 3)
  • 2016 Angels: Jered Weaver (June 19) and Ricky Nolasco (August 31)

As you probably noticed, most of those came from the early years of the Maddux, before offense exploded and made it harder to get through nine innings, much less on no more than 99 pitches. Of the 33, 18 happened in the first six years of the pitch-count era, including a whopping 6 sets in 1988. It's become somewhat more common again though, as this is now the fifth consecutive season with a pair of teammates who accomplished it.

The 1988 Giants are the only team to have four different pitchers each record at least one Maddux in the same season, while the 1993 Braves had three. If a third Toronto pitcher can throw one this year, they'll be the first team in 22 years to have a trio of Maddux throwers in a season.

Out of MLB's 30 teams, 20 of them have had teammates with Madduxes and 10 teams have had it happen more than once, lead by the Mariners, Pirates, and Blue Jays with three different seasons each.

Chris Bosio appears on the list three times, the only pitcher to do so. He's there with Jaime Navarro twice (1991 and 1992). Two other pairs of teammates each had a Maddux in the same season more than once: Zane Smith and Doug Drabek (1990 and 1991), and Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine (1993 and 2000).

My favorite item from the list is definitely the pair of guys from the 2006 Mariners, because Moyer became the oldest pitcher to throw a Maddux, and Felix became the youngest. (You can find the full list for both oldest and youngest here.)

Okay, all that said, my original reason for writing this post was to figure out the closest together two teammates have ever thrown Madduxes, so let's turn our attention to that.

Closest together Madduxes by teammates:

t1) 1988 Blue Jays: Jimmy Key and Dave Stieb (2 days*)
t1) 1991 Pirates: Smith and Drabek (2 days)
3) 1988 Giants: Robinson and Reuschel (7 days)
4) 2015 Blue Jays: Hutchinson and Buehrle (9 days)
5) 1988 Giants: Downs and Mulholland (11 days)
6) 2000 Braves: Maddux and Glavine (12 days)
7) 1988 Royals: Power and Leibrandt (13 days)
8) 1994 Reds: Browning and Smiley (15 days)
t9) 1988 Red Sox: Roger Clemens and Mike Boddicker (19 days)
t9) 1993 Braves: Glavine and Avery (19 days)

*The Blue Jays were off on the day between Key and Stieb's Madduxes, making it the only time a team has ever had Madduxes in back-to-back games.

So, Hutchinson and Buehrle didn't quite make the top of the list, but they are the closest together two teammates have pitched Madduxes in 24 years.

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