Wednesday, October 13, 2010

COMPLETE GAME VICTORIES TO CLINCH DIVISION SERIES (Updated with Cliff Lee)


















A few days ago I wrote a post about pitchers who threw a complete game victory to clinch the Division Series.

I felt it was such a rare occurrence that it was worth noting.

Now it has happened twice in three days and Cliff Lee has added his name to the list. It just goes to show you, I shouldn't write lists like this until the round is OVER!

Let's update it.

Complete Game Division Series Clinchers

John Smoltz
1997 ATLANTA BRAVES
Game 3
4-1 victory against Houston Astros




Bobby Jones
2000 NEW YORK METS
Game 4
4-0 victory against San Francisco Giants




Curt Schilling
2001 ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS
Game 5
2-1 victory against St. Louis Cardinals



Cole Hamels
2010 PHILADELPHIA PHLLIES
Game 3
2-0 victory against Cincinnati Reds


Cliff Lee
2010 TEXAS RANGERS
Game 5
5-1 victory against Tampa Bay Rays

The 2001 Series didn’t end with Schilling on the mound getting the last out. The series ended with a walk off single by Tony Womack.

For sticklers of details, they played the Division Series in 1981 as well and two more complete games clinched series THAT year.






Steve Rogers
1981 MONTREAL EXPOS
Game 5
3-0 victory against Philadelphia Phillies


Jerry Reuss
1981 LOS ANGELES DODGERS
Game 5
4-0 victory against Houston Astros


But while relievers were being used more frequently then, the whole specialization of EVERY bullpen role (and the cheapening of the save) didn’t come around until the late 1980s.

Maybe we'll update it next year if there is any new names to add.

Little side note... Cliff Lee is the first person to throw a complete game to clinch an AMERICAN LEAGUE Division Series.

ChaChing this off season!

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