Who are the only two Baltimore Orioles starters since 1960 to beat the New York Yankees four times in a season without a loss?
Bud Norris (2014) and Mike Flanagan (1978) are Baltimore’s representatives among the list of 15 major league starters to accomplish the feat between 1960 and 2015.
Here’s an overview of what their respective numbers looked like those two years.
Bud Norris in 2014: 4-0, 2.74 ERA, seven earned runs, 28 strikeouts, and six walks in 23 innings pitched.
Mike Flanagan in 1978: 4-0, 3.09 ERA, 12 earned runs, 17 strikeouts, and 12 walks in 35 innings pitched.
The origin of this Yankee-beating tidbit is Tyler Kepner’s New York Times article about Houston Astros starter Dallas Keuchel. Kepner examines Keuchel’s mastery of the Yankees last season, when he tossed 16 scoreless innings against the Bronx Bombers in the regular season and added a half-dozen additional scoreless innings for good measure in the American League Wild Card game.
From the New York Times.
Keuchel threw the most pitches in the majors last season, but 62 qualified starters averaged more per inning than his 15.1. He led the A.L. in innings pitched, with 232, and said that since his goal was to work nine innings every start, his ideal total would be 300. No pitcher has done that since Steve Carlton in 1980, but Keuchel was probably serious.
“He wants to finish every game,” Hinch said, “and you would think that all major leaguers have that mentality, but they don’t.”
Keuchel started the wild-card game on three days’ rest, and said he was so focused that he felt strong enough to go nine innings. Only a mound visit from Hinch, with two on and two outs in the sixth, could break his concentration. Keuchel knew then that he would face just one more batter, Alex Rodriguez, who flied out to center.
Keuchel gets the nod versus the Yankees on Opening Day in New York. On April 4, we are all Dallas Keuchel fans.