Phil Hughes could finish the season with the best K/BB ratio in MLB history

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Twins right-hander Phil Hughes has thrived with a change of scenery this season and he could finish the year with a place in MLB history.

Hughes struck out five and walked none while allowing four runs over seven innings in a no-decision against the Indians last night. He now owns a 3.61 ERA over 31 starts this season to go along with an absurd 181/16 K/BB ratio over 201 2/3 innings. That gives him 11.31 strikeouts for every walk, which would beat Bret Saberhagen (1994) for the single-season record.

If you look at the list on Baseball Reference (which still has Hughes at the top) you’ll see a lot of names from the late 1800s, so here’s a look at where he stands among qualified starters since 1901:

11.3 – Phil Hughes (2014)
11.0 – Bret Saberhagen (1994)
10.3  – Cliff Lee (2010)
9.6 – Curt Schilling (2002)
8.9 – Pedro Martinez (2000)
8.9 – Greg Maddux (1997)
8.5 – Pedro Martinez (1999)
8.3 – Ben Sheets (2004)
7.9 – Carlos Silva (2005)
7.9 – Greg Maddux (1995)

Some amazing company there. It’s worth noting that Mariners right-hander Hisashi Iwakuma currently has 7.89 strikeouts for every walk while Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw is at 7.35 and David Price has 7.08. In case you haven’t noticed, pitching is dominating this season.

Hughes can finish off the record when he makes one final start next week against the Diamondbacks at home.

Attempting to complete cycle, Robinson Chirinos thrown out to end game

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With his Astros trailing the Tigers 2-1, catcher Robinson Chirinos began his at-bat in the bottom of the ninth a triple shy of the cycle. He doubled in the second inning, singled in the fourth, and hit a solo homer in the seventh. Yordan Álvarez and Yuli Gurriel both struck out, leaving the Astros’ fate in the hands of Chirinos against Joe Jiménez. After working the count to 2-1, Chirinos slapped an 85 MPH slider to the gap in right-center field. A diving Travis Demeritte could not come up with the ball, but center fielder Harold Castro fired the ball back in to Gordon Beckham, who then made a perfect throw to Dawel Lugo at third base. Chirinos was tagged out for the final out of the game. No triple, no cycle. The Astros lost 2-1.

Chirinos was attempting to become the first Astro to hit for the cycle since Brandon Barnes on July 19, 2013 against the Mariners.

The Astros entered Wednesday’s game as the largest favorite in 15 seasons, according to ESPN’s David Purdum. The Astros were -500 per Caesars Sportsbook. Other sportsbooks had them at -550. So the Tigers’ win was quite the upset.

Justin Verlander went the distance in the loss. The only blemishes on his line were solo homers to Ronny Rodríguez in the fifth and John Hicks in the ninth. They were the only hits he allowed while walking none and striking out 11.