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Craig Kimbrel first in history to fan half his batters faced

Oct 3, 2012, 4:00 PM EDT

Craig Kimbrel Getty Images

Braves closer Craig Kimbrel struck out three out of the four Pirates he faced Wednesday to become the first pitcher in major league history to fan at least half of the batters he faced.

Kimbrel racked up 116 strikeouts while facing 231 batters. That’s more than four strikeouts for each of the 27 hits he allowed. He struck out more than eight times as many batters as he walked (14), which is perhaps the most stunning stat of all for those of us who saw him as a prospect a few years back. He walked fewer batters in 62 2/3 innings this year than he did in 20 2/3 innings (16) following his arrival to the majors in 2010.

The record Kimbrel set today barely even requires a minimum-inning requirement. Not only is Kimbrel the first to do it in minimum 50 or 60 innings, but he’d be the first to do it with a minimum of six innings. Francisco Rodriguez struck out 13 of the 21 batters he faced after joining the Angels in Sept. 2002. He pitched 5 2/3 innings that month before becoming a postseason hero. No one else has done it over as few as three innings.

  1. rollinghighwayblues - Oct 3, 2012 at 4:04 PM

    To say that’s incredible is a complete understatement.

  2. mrwillie - Oct 3, 2012 at 4:11 PM

    Days like today I am glad I can work at home. Got to see Sheets go out like he did, Chippers last reg season hit, and Kimbrel make history. Good day for baseball.

    • pinkfloydprism - Oct 3, 2012 at 4:15 PM

      It will be an even better day if Miggy wins the triple crown!

  3. El Bravo - Oct 3, 2012 at 4:13 PM

    Sick Nasty

  4. dcfan4life - Oct 3, 2012 at 4:15 PM

    Insane numbers such as this will be just good enough for 3rd on the cy young vote, which for a reliever is pretty good. Great season, hope we dont see him in the playoffs (either we dont play the braves or always have a lead(.

  5. number42is1 - Oct 3, 2012 at 4:18 PM

    you mean in a single season, right?

  6. stlouis1baseball - Oct 3, 2012 at 4:26 PM

    I don’t know people.
    W – L Record, the ERA, Home Runs, Batting Average, RBI’s, Strikeouts.
    Do they REALLY mean anything?
    I mean…why bother? We have already proven if a stat doesnt have a little “+” either before or after it the stat is totally worthless. Right? Who’s with me?

    • frenchysplatediscipline - Oct 3, 2012 at 4:30 PM

      I am with you on this.

      But I hope Kimbrel has a chance to help me agree with you Friday night 😀

      • stlouis1baseball - Oct 3, 2012 at 4:35 PM

        Touche’ Frency. Touche’.
        For what it’s worth…I am hoping his ass is riding the pine Friday night!
        No Kimbrel Sightings Friday Night.

      • frenchysplatediscipline - Oct 3, 2012 at 4:40 PM

        Actually I kinda hope he is riding the pine too.

        After you caught us last year, I am hoping for a laugher.

        9-0 after the 2nd would make Friday night a lot smoother…

    • Chip Caray's Eyebrows - Oct 3, 2012 at 5:01 PM

      Ridicule is the tribute paid to the genius by the mediocrities.
      –Oscar Wilde

      • stlouis1baseball - Oct 4, 2012 at 9:19 AM

        Ummm…thanks Stymie. Thanks a lot.
        We can always count on you to bring a healthy dose of positive contributions.

      • Chip Caray's Eyebrows - Oct 4, 2012 at 9:27 AM

        Translation: “I don’t understand what you’re getting at because I am a dumb shit redneck Cardinals fan.”

      • stlouis1baseball - Oct 4, 2012 at 1:55 PM

        You don’t know me. You don’t know where I live. You don’t know what I do for a living.
        If so…you would know that I graduated in the top 10% of my class…have a hard earned Business degree (which I paid for myself while working a full time job) and I run a Business that employs 30 people. I know exactly “what you are getting at” Stymie.
        I just chose not to stoop to your level as your such a Cretin it would only encourage you.
        Again…Stymie. Stay Positive. Turn that frown upside down.
        Above all…stop stalking me. It isn’t healthy.

      • Chip Caray's Eyebrows - Oct 4, 2012 at 2:59 PM

        During your impressive high school and college education, somebody should’ve covered capitalization and the proper instances for its usage.

      • stlouis1baseball - Oct 4, 2012 at 3:05 PM

        Thank you for the grammar assistance Mrs. Reynolds.

  7. Stiller43 - Oct 3, 2012 at 4:32 PM

    Meh you cant count that! He completed it against the pirates!

    All kidding aside…whoa

  8. delawarephilliesfan - Oct 3, 2012 at 4:54 PM

    That is just amazing…no let down this year at all. Frighteningly good

  9. scchamil - Oct 3, 2012 at 5:29 PM

    As a reds fan, I can’t believe how dominant Chapman has been for much of this year… but to see what Kimbrel has done – to know there is a guy out there striking guys out at an even higher rate… is just UNbelievable. I really think he should get a lot of consideration for CY Young. My personal opinion is Cueto has been the best NL pitcher for the last couple years given the park he had to deal with… but basing it on more than a biased opinion – it has to come down to Gio, Dickey and Kimbrel for Cy Young right? I’d vote for Kimbrel.

  10. timmons94 - Oct 3, 2012 at 6:19 PM

    I hope people are enjoying Kimbrel. He is as dominating a closer as u will ever see. Ever. Absolute stud. When in switch from pirates or royals game to watch him. Never disappoints.

  11. maegreen18 - Oct 3, 2012 at 8:58 PM


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