Thursday, June 29, 2023

Domingo German Throws Perfect Game, Joins Elite Yankees Club

Domingo German celebrating with his teammates after achieving the feat. @Yankees.

Domingo German joined one of the most elite clubs in Yankees and baseball history on Wednesday night when he threw a perfect game against the Oakland Athletics.

In the 11-0 Yankees win, German went 27 up and 27 down, with his final line: 9 innings, 0 hits, 0 runs, 0 walks, 9 strikeouts, 99 pitches (72 strikes).

German closed it out in the ninth inning with an Aledmys Diaz groundout to shortstop Anthony Volpe, a Shea Langeliers fly out to center fielder Harrison Bader, and a Esteury Ruiz grounder to third baseman Josh Donaldson.

This was just the fourth no-hitter in Yankees history, following Don Larsen's in Game 5 of the 1956 World Series against the Brooklyn Dodgers on October 8, 1956; David Wells on May 17, 1998; and David Cone on July 18, 1999. Yes, Wells' and Cone's were a little over a year apart, with them feeling as common as the championships they won in that era. Like a lot of baseball history, the Yankees now have the most perfect games, followed by three for the Chicago White Sox.

Kyle Higashioka was the catcher, and he made some history as well. It was the second no-hitter he has caught, since he was behind the plate when Corey Kluber threw one in Texas on May 19, 2021. Higashioka became the third Yankees catcher to achieve the feat, joining Yogi Berra, who caught three no-hitters, and Joe Girardi's two. Girardi caught Cone's perfect game and Dwight Gooden's no-hitter on May 14, 1996.

German is the first Dominican-born pitcher to throw a perfect game, and it was only the 15th in American League history.

It was the 24th perfect game in Major League Baseball history, with the last being Felix Hernandez, "King Felix," of the Seattle Mariners on August 15, 2012 against the Tampa Bay Rays. That was one of three perfect games in the 2012 season, as the San Francisco Giants' Matt Cain threw one on June 13, 2012 against the Houston Astros; and Philip Humber of the Chicago White Sox threw one against the Mariners in Seattle on April 21, 2012. (three facts about the Humber one: he was an ex-Met, which gave it interest here; it occurred during a furious Yankees' comeback in Boston, in which they were down 9-0 to the Red Sox and won 15-9, during which Fox cut away to show Humber finish the game; and that shows that Seattle was a very rare case of a team having some one throw a perfect game for an against them in the same season.) A full list of perfect games will appear at the end of this report.

German improved to 5-5, and lowered his ERA (earned run average) to 4.54, down from 5.10 entering the night. This perfect game came after two brutal outings, in which he was touched up for seven runs on seven hits and two walks in two innings at Boston on June 16, and eight runs on 10 hits and two walks in 3 1/3 innings last Thursday against Seattle at The Stadium.

This was German's first complete game of his career, which is reflective of the era. He was the first Yankee, and eighth in Major League history, to throw a perfect game on the road and in a night game. 

Pitch counts are known for the last 21 perfect games in Major League Baseball history, beginning with the Cleveland Naps' Addie Joss' perfect game against the Chicago White Sox in 1908, according to Elias. German's 99-pitch effort means that, of those 21, it was the 10th with fewer than 100 pitches. (By comparison, Cone threw just 88, while Wells needed 120 in their perfect games).



Domingo German - Yankees - June 28, 2022 at Oakland Athletics

Felix Hernandez - Seattle Mariners - August 15, 2012 vs. Tampa Bay Rays

Matt Cain - San Francisco Giants - June 13, 2012 vs. Houston Astros

Philip Humber - Chicago White Sox - April 21, 2012 at Seattle Mariners

Roy Halladay - Philadelphia Phillies - May 29, 2010 at Florida Marlins

Dallas Braden - Oakland Athletics - May 9, 2010 vs. Tampa Bay Rays 

Mark Buehrle - Chicago White Sox - July 23, 2009 vs. Tampa Bay Rays

Randy Johnson - Arizona Diamondbacks - May 18, 2004 vs. Atlanta Braves

David Cone - Yankees - July 18, 1999 vs. Montreal Expos

David Wells - Yankees - May 17, 1998 vs. Minnesota Twins

Kenny Rogers - Texas Rangers - July 28, 1994 vs. California Angels

Dennis Martinez - Montreal Expos - July 28, 1991 vs. Los Angeles Dodgers

Tom Browning - Cincinnati Reds - September 16, 1988 vs. Los Angeles Dodgers

Mike Witt - California Angels - September 30, 1984 vs. Texas Rangers

Len Barker - Cleveland Indians - May 15, 1981 vs. Toronto Blue Jays

Catfish Hunter - Oakland Athletics - May 8, 1968 vs. Minnesota Twins

Sandy Koufax - Los Angeles Dodgers - September 9, 1965 vs. Chicago Cubs

Jim Bunning - Philadelphia Phillies - June 21, 1964 vs. New York Mets in Game 1 of a a Father's Day doubleheader

Don Larsen - Yankees - October 8, 1956 vs. Brooklyn Dodgers in the fifth game of the 1956 World Series 

Charlie Robertson - Chicago White Sox - April 30, 1922 at Detroit Tigers

Addie Joss - Cleveland Naps - October 2, 1908 vs. Chicago White Sox

Cy Young - Boston Americans - May 5, 1904 vs. Philadelphia Athletics

John Ward - Providence Grays - June 17, 1880 vs. Buffalo Bisons

Lee Richmond - Worcester Ruby Legs - June 12, 1880 vs. Cleveland Blues

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