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Major League Baseball has such an illustrious history that it’s remarkable that there are still things that haven’t been done yet.
On Wednesday, one more thing was crossed off the list.
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Houston Astros pitchers Luis Garcia and Phil Maton each pitched a pristine inning against the Texas Rangers: nine pitches and three strikeouts.
Astros and Rangers officials said it was the first time in MLB history to have two nine-pitch innings and three strikeouts in the same game, either by one team or each team playing each other.
“It feels so good, because it’s history,” Garcia added, via MLB.com. “I’m so happy for myself and for Phil. I don’t know what to say. I’m happy.”
The icing on the cake? Houston achieved the victory 9-2. Martín Maldonado helped out with a two-run double in the first inning and a home run in the fourth.
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“Being a part of that, every time you make history … I’m glad I was a catcher in that situation,” he said.
Added Astros manager Dusty Baker: “We haven’t had a first inning like that in a long time. A couple of records, the same guys we struck out in a row on nine pitches… So it was a good day.” for us”.
Garcia and Maton were the eighth and ninth pitchers to throw clean innings in Astros history. Will Harris last did it in 2019 against the Lost Angeles Angels and Brandon Backe did it in 2004 against the Milwaukee Brewers.
“It’s great. It’s not something that you go out every day and obviously work hard to do. Obviously, you’re trying to strike out every hitter you face,” Maton said. “I’m still trying to figure it out. Cool experience.”
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Garcia pitched six innings and allowed two runs, one earned, on four hits and struck out nine. Maton relieved him and his only inning struck out all three batters.
Associated Press contributed to this report.