In his first career start on May 6, 2018, Domingo German pitched six no-hit innings against Cleveland, being a combined no-hitter. The combined innings lasted seven innings before the Yankees overcame a four-run deficit and won on Gleyber Torres’ game-ending three-run homer.
Since then German has made 84 other starts and flashes of no-hit material, most notably on April 15 when he retired the first 16 Minnesota Twins amid suspicions of using a foreign substance, angering his rival. Done. And there was also the time in Boston in July 2021 when he no-hit the Red Sox before Alex Verdugo took a single on the 93rd pitch and the bullpen ultimately fouled the game.
And some of those other starts make him an unlikely no-hit candidate, especially based on recent results. A week earlier against Seattle, he allowed 10 runs and was taken off the mound after 3 1/3 innings, something that happened after he struck out seven runs in two innings in Boston.
So on the surface what German accomplished on Wednesday may seem impossible when he completed the 24th perfect game in baseball history, the fourth by a Yankee and the fourth since Felix Hernandez did it for the Seattle Mariners against the Tampa Bay Rays on August 15, 2012. . ,
It took German 99 pitches to pitch an unlikely perfect game against the Oakland A’s, a team challenging the 1962 Mets for the worst record ever. He threw his acclaimed curveball 51 times – 16 more than in his first career start and 21 more than in the Sticky Substance Check game.
Manager Aaron Boone told reporters, “When he rolls like that, it’s fun to watch his craft because he’s so good at commanding all of his pitches.” “His curveball was great tonight, but because his changeup and his fastball were good too, it made that curveball even more special.”
And when the German was easily knocked out of the finals as MLB hitting leader Asturi Ruiz gently beat Josh Donaldson, he joined a list that included Hall of Famers Randy Johnson, Roy Halladay, Cy Young and Catfish Hunter. —with David Cone and other standouts included. David Wells.
“Very exciting,” the German told reporters through a translator. “When you think about something so unique in baseball, not many people have the opportunity to pitch a perfect game. To achieve something like this in my career is something I will always cherish.
German’s road to perfection has hardly been the smoothest. He was not projected to be in the rotation when the Yankees began spring training, but then Carlos Rodan and Frankie Montas were injured. And his uncertainty arose when he missed the first three-plus months of 2022 due to a shoulder injury.
Of course, whether the German should have been able to pitch in the first place is the source of various discussions. While he emerged as the Yankees’ unlikely ace at the end of his 18-win season in 2019, German was suspended for the rest of that season for violating MLB’s domestic abuse policy for an incident at an event hosted by CC Sabathia. He was one of many to tweet his support for the rare feat.
.During his suspension, German considered walking away from baseball and by spring training 2021 he was speaking to his teammates and apologizing to teammates who acknowledged German’s mistake and asked the right-hander for his Had high hopes for making positive use of second chances.
“I’m very proud of him,” Boone told reporters. “For those of you who know him or have been around him, he is a very sweet guy. He’s definitely been through a lot, owned a lot, and tries really hard to be a good fellow.
As for last night’s incident, it didn’t seem like Oakland hit too many balls hard when making contact. The A’s fouled 17 pitches and put the other 18 in play. Of the pitches that made contact, only one had a speed of over 100 mph and eight had a speed of over 90 mph.
Based on what happened against Seattle, despite the prospect of facing the worst team in baseball, it seemed impossible to expect, at least until last night’s innings sharply unfolded.
Just like what happened in the fifth game of the 1956 World Series when Don Larsen pitched the most famous perfecto in baseball history. He did so in his first start of the World Series after throwing out 10 batters, six of whom reached base. And when it was over, one of the details came from Joe Trimble, who started his daily with this apt opening sentence. The news story led: “The imperfect man presented a perfect game.
The German’s game was far more unlikely than that of David Wells in 1998 or David Cone a year later. Both were during extraordinary careers and by the time Cone ended the Expos on “Yogi Berra” Day, he had completed 20 win seasons.
And when Roy Halladay did it, he was in the midst of a Hall of Fame career and the only unforeseeable factor was that he gave up seven runs in his previous start against the Red Sox.
Perfect games are rare and when they do happen, they are remembered forever, which the German, even with his imperfect past, achieved in a span of two and a half hours.