Walker Buehler
Getty Images

Video: Walker Buehler strikes out 16 in complete game win

Leave a comment

Dodgers right-hander Walker Buehler is fast approaching the career-high marks he established during his rookie campaign in 2018, particularly after the 16-strikeout complete game gem he twirled against the Rockies on Friday night. He expended just 111 pitches during his start and surrendered only three hits — a single to Charlie Blackmon and a pair of solo home runs to both Blackmon and Nolan Arenado.

For the first 3 2/3 innings, however, 24-year-old Buehler was perfect. He set down 11 consecutive outs — including five consecutive strikeouts between the second and third innings — before Arenado belted a two-out homer in the fourth inning. The righty’s eventual 16-strikeout feat was the 11th of its kind in franchise history, and represented a particular kind of excellence the club had not seen since Hideo Nomo’s one-run, 17-strikeout complete game against the Marlins in 1996.

The Dodgers’ offense, meanwhile, held their own: Chris Taylor drove in the first run on a sac fly in the second, while Cody Bellinger collected his 25th homer of the year off of German Márquez in the fourth. Tied 2-2 in the ninth, Max Muncy took a seven-pitch walk from Jairo Díaz and promptly plated the go-ahead run after rookie Matt Beaty drove a two-out, 1-0 fastball to center field for a walk-off homer.

The 4-2 win was just the latest in a string of exceptional appearances by Buehler, from his near no-hitter last Saturday to his quality start against the Giants and one-run, 11-strikeout affair against the Diamondbacks at the start of the month. He’ll get another chance to boost his season stats (an 8-1 record in 15 starts with a 2.96 ERA, 1.3 BB/9, 9.9 SO/9, and 2.6 fWAR across 91 1/3 innings) when he takes on the D-backs during the Dodgers’ road trip this Wednesday.

Zack Wheeler headed to IL due to shoulder fatigue

Hunter Martin/Getty Images

Mets pitcher Zack Wheeler will be placed on the 10-day injured list due to fatigue in his right shoulder, Newsday’s Tim Healey reports. The roster move is retroactive to July 12. Steven Matz will open up a two-game series in Minnesota, starting in Wheeler’s place on Tuesday.

As Healey notes, the soonest Wheeler can return is July 23, which would give him at most two starts ahead of the July 31 trade deadline. Wheeler has frequently been brought up in trade conversations as he can become a free agent after the season and the 42-51 Mets have been freefalling.

Wheeler, 29, owns a 4.69 ERA with 130 strikeouts and 34 walks across 119 innings of work this season.