Archive for August 3rd, 2011

(In addition to appearing at The Captain’s Blog, this post is also being syndicated at TheYankeeAnalysts.)

With an assist from the rain, Phil Hughes registered the first shutout of his major league career. It was the kind of performance the Yankees had been waiting for all season, so perhaps it was appropriate they had to also abide two rain delays before getting to fully enjoy it.

Ironically, by delaying the start of the game by nearly an hour because of the “threat of bad weather”, the White Sox ensured there would be another stoppage when the storm finally hit several hours later. In fact, if not for Hughes’ unusual efficiency (despite pitching a season high six innings, he recorded his second lowest pitch count at 65), the eventual delay probably have wiped out the game altogether.

Despite clear skies, the groundcrew at U.S. Cellular Field covered the infield before the start of last night's game (Photo: AP).

Instead of having a lead washed away, the Yankees were granted an abbreviated victory and Hughes became the franchise’s first pitcher since Sam McDowell in 1973 to author a shutout of six innings or less. Since 1919, there have been 182 no hitters, but only 162 of these “mini-shutouts”, so thanks to the rain, and the White Sox unnecessary caution, baseball was treated to a rare event. Unfortunately, however, phantom rain delays have become much too common.


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