It was since 1999 that a pitcher in the American League has recorded 300 punch outs. That man was Pedro Martinez, on Wednesday evening Boston Red Sox ace Chris Sale entered at 287.
After mowing down 12 Baltimore Orioles in 7.2 innings, Sale was one strikeout away from the illustrious No. 300.
With the Orioles’ Ryan Flaherty at the plate, up 2-0, Sale battled back with two straight strikes via a 97 mile per hour fastball and a slider that topped out at 78. The 6-foot-6 southpaw’s fifth pitch was an 84 mile per hour slider that clipped the bottom left part of the zone and froze the Baltimore second baseman for his 13th strikeout of the game and 300th on the season.
300 strikeouts for Chris Sale pic.twitter.com/B4ytjNRubL
— Pete Blackburn (@PeteBlackburn) September 21, 2017
The Red Sox went on to win the game 9-0 as Sale picked up his 17th victory of the year.
Sale, who had never struck out more than 274 batters in a season (2015), is just the 35th pitcher in MLB history to reach the milestone.