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Yu Darvish sets Cubs record with eight consecutive strikeouts

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Cubs starter Yu Darvish set a new club record with eight consecutive strikeouts during Tuesday night’s home start against the Reds. Darvish struck out Sonny Gray and Josh VanMeter to end the second inning, then consecutively fanned Joey Votto, Eugenio Suárez, and Aristides Aquino to end the third inning. In the fourth, Darvish whiffed Tucker Barnhart, Phillip Ervin, and Brian O’Gray to quickly get out of the frame. The streak ended when José Peraza lined out to third base to kick off the fifth inning.

The major league record for consecutive strikeouts is 10, held by the Mets’ Tom Seaver, who accomplished the feat on April 22, 1970 against the Padres. Doug Fister holds the American League record at nine. We remember that one fondly.

Darvish struck out 14 batters over six innings on Thursday against the Padres. He’s been on quite the roll, tossing 15 consecutive scoreless innings coming into Tuesday’s start. However, the Reds plated three runs off of him in the first inning. Overall, Darvish came into Tuesday’s action with a 3.97 ERA and a 204/55 K/BB ratio in 163 1/3 innings on the season.

Giants sign Darin Ruf to minor league contract

Darin Ruf
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The Athletic’s Jayson Stark reports that the Giants have signed 1B/OF Darin Ruf to a minor league contract.

Ruf, 33, played parts of five seasons in the majors with the Phillies from 2012-16, enjoying occasional offensive success. He spent the last three seasons in the KBO League in South Korea with the Samsung Lions, reigniting his career. Ruf hit an aggregate .313/.404/.564 with 86 home runs and 350 RBI over 1,756 plate appearances.

Ruf joins an ever-increasing list of players whose major league careers fizzled out, then found new life overseas — Eric Thames and Miles Mikolas are a couple of examples. Ruf will hope to prove himself as a big leaguer once more in spring training with the Giants.