Domingo Germán perfect game: seven remarkable facts, including a good omen for Yankees and the righty’s inspiration

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By Webdesk

MLB history was made Wednesday night at RingCentral Coliseum. New York Yankees right-hander Domingo Germán pitched baseball’s 24th perfect game to defeat the Oakland Athletics 11–0. He did it in just 99 pitches and the perfect game was remarkably stress-free. Germán went to just two three-ball counts and there was no need for a great defensive play behind him.

“Honestly, I felt like I was a passenger for this one,” Yankees catcher Kyle Higashioka told after the game. “Just don’t miss the ball and don’t mess it up. Domingo was definitely running the ship and he had a plan. I mean, we both had a plan, but he had the ultimate confidence in his stuff.”

German wasn’t even expected to be in the New York rotation this season. He returned to camp as a swingman/spot starter before spring injuries to Frankie Montas (shoulder), Carlos Rodón (forearm) and Luis Severino (lat) pushed him into the rotation. Germán is now third on the Yankees in starts and innings, behind only Gerrit Cole and Clarke Schmidt.

Here are seven things you should know about German’s historic perfect game.

1. He is the first Dominican-born pitcher to throw a perfect game

As the subheading says, Germán is the first Dominican-born pitcher to throw a perfect game. He is only the third pitcher born outside the United States to throw a perfect game, joining El Presidente Dennis Martínez (Nicaragua) and King Félix Hernández (Venezuela). Martínez threw his perfect game for the Expos against the Dodgers on June 28, 1991. Hernández threw his perfect game against the Rays on August 15, 2012. He was, of course, with the Mariners.

2. It was the most lopsided perfect game ever

More surprising than the perfect game is that the Yankees score 11 points. OK, that’s an exaggeration, but the New York offense has had a really rough time this season and especially lately. Heading into Wednesday’s game, they batted .198/.261/.347 and averaged just 3.0 runs per game in the 19 games since Aaron Judge injured his toe crashing into the perimeter wall of Dodger Stadium.

Wednesday’s 11 runs equal the number of runs the Yankees scored in their previous five games combined, and it’s the most runs the Yankees have scored since they hung 11 on (who else?) the Athletics at Yankee Stadium on May 10th. The 11-0 score is the most lopsided perfect game ever:

  1. Domingo German, Yankees vs. Ace: 11-0 on June 28, 2023
  2. Matt Cain, Giants vs. Astros: 10-0 on June 13, 2012
  3. Jim Bunning, Phillies vs. Mets: 6-0 on June 21, 1964
  4. David Cone, Yankees vs. Expos: 6-0 on July 18, 1999
  5. Mark Buehrle, White Sox vs. Rays: 5-0 on July 23, 2009

The average score of MLB’s 24 perfect games is 3.5-0 and there have been seven 1-0 perfect games, unbelievable.

3. German was hammered on his previous starts

German certainly didn’t go into Wednesday’s game on a hot streak. He gave up 17 runs in 5 1/3 innings in his previous two starts, including 10 runs and four home runs against the Mariners last time out. That night, Germán became the third Yankee to allow 10 runs and four homers in a game, joining Whitey Ford and Bob Turley. He is the fourth Yankee to throw a perfect game. Somehow the perfect game is only the second most exclusive club Germán joined in the last week (me kid, me kid).

4. German dedicated the game to his uncle

German threw his perfect game with pain in his heart. Following his historic performance, he revealed that an uncle had passed away earlier in the week and that he was “crying a lot in the clubhouse” the day before he started.

“Unfortunately an uncle of mine passed away two days ago and I cried a lot in the clubhouse yesterday. I had him with me all game. I thought of him and it happened. This game is a tribute to him.” German told the YES Network. “…He would be so happy. He was always someone who really brought joy to our family.”

German added that there was never any doubt that he would make it to Wednesday’s start. “There was no doubt about making the start. We had really good communication back and forth with my family. Definitely not an easy week. At the same time, I felt like staying here with the team and doing my job,” he said . MLB. com.

5. MLB was in the middle of a very long perfect game drought

Germán’s perfect game was the first in baseball since Hernández against the Rays on August 15, 2012. There were three perfect games that season (also Cain and Phil Humber), the most ever in a single season, after which MLB entered a long perfect game drought . The 3,969 days between Hernández and Germán is baseball’s longest drought since the 6,216 days between Catfish Hunter (May 8, 1968) and Len Barker (May 15, 1981).

6. The A’s hadn’t been undefeated since 1991

Oakland went into Wednesday’s game with by far baseball’s longest streak of not being a no-hit. Prior to Germán, the A’s were last unhit by a quartet of Orioles pitchers (Bob Milacki, Mike Flanagan, Mark Williamson, Gregg Olson) on July 13, 1991. Here are the longest active streaks of no no-hit:

  1. Nationals/Exhibits: David Cone (Yankees) on July 18, 1999 (perfect game)
  2. angels: Eric Milton (twins) on September 11, 1999
  3. royal houses: Jon Lester (Red Sox) on May 19, 2008

Every other team has gone unhit at least once since 2010. The A’s streak of not getting hit was nearly two decades longer than the next longest streak. Between June 23, 1971 (Rick Wise) and April 20, 2016 (Jake Arrieta), Oakland went 5,010 games without a hit, the longest streak since the Reds went 7,109 without a hit.

This wasn’t the first time the Athletics had been on the wrong side of a perfect game, either. Cy Young threw a perfect game on May 5, 1904 against the then Philadelphia A’s. That was the first perfect game of modern times (since 1900).

7. The Yankees won the World Series every year with a perfect game

To date, of course. We’ll see what happens with the 2023 Yankees, but Germán’s perfect play is the fourth in Yankees history, and they won the World Series the previous three times. Here’s the summary:

  • Don Larsen v Dodgers: October 8, 1956 (Yankees beat Dodgers in World Series 4-3)
  • David Wells to Gemini: May 17, 1998 (Yankees beat Padres in World Series 4-0)
  • David Kegel vs. Expos: July 18, 1999 (Yankees beat Braves in World Series 4-0)

Larsen, of course, pitched his perfect game in the World Series. Game 5, to be exact. The series was tied 2-2 and Larsen’s perfect play gave New York the win in the crucial Game 5. Will the 2023 Yankees continue the streak? The odds are against, but hey, stranger things have happened. Like a pitcher who allows 10 runs one start and throws a perfect game the next.

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