No one expected Marlins lefty Brad Hand to be perfect in his big league debut, but it might been the only way he could have picked up a win.
In Florida's 1-0 loss to the Braves on Tuesday, Hand took the loss with six innings of one-hit, one-run ball, and struck out six while walking one.
Hand was the second pitcher in the live-ball era to go at least six innings, allow just one hit and take the loss in his Major League debut. The other was the Senators' Mike Thompson on May 19, 1971. Thompson went seven innings, allowed two runs (one earned) on one hit with nine walks and took the loss in a 4-1 defeat at the hands of the Orioles.
Hand was the first pitcher to go at least six innings and allow just one hit in his Major League debut since another Marlins pitcher -- Aldaberto Mendez -- allowed one hit in six innings on Sept. 6, 2010. Besides Hand and Mendez, another Marlins pitcher went at least six innings and allowed just one hit in his Major League debut. On Sept. 4, 2001, Josh Beckett went six and allowed just a single to the Cubs' Rondell White.
In the live-ball era, only one other franchise -- the Orioles -- has had three pitchers go at least six innings and allow a single hit in their Major League debut. The three Orioles pitchers: Bob Milacki, Anthony Telford, and Chris Waters.
On July 19, 1960, Juan Marichal was a 22-year-old rookie pitcher for the San Francisco Giants. Facing the Phillies at Candlestick Park, he retired the first 19 Phillies he faced. His bid for perfection came to an end with one out in the seventh, when Tony Taylor reached on an error by the shortstop. Marichal then lost his chance for a no-hitter with two outs in the eighth, when pinch-hitter Clay Dalrymple singled.
Marichal got the last out of that inning, and then set down the Phillies in order in the ninth to finish with a 12-strikeout, one-hit shutout -- in his Major League debut.
The Braves' victory over Florida came on the strength of two hits (they were outhit, 4-2), including a solo home run by Alex Gonzalez. The last time Atlanta won a game on two or fewer hits was on Sept. 25, 2004. That win was also against Florida, also finished with a 1-0 score, was also highlighted by a solo home run (by Dewayne Wise), also ended with the Braves having two hits, and also saw the Marlins with four hits.
Atlanta's Tommy Hanson pitched six shutout innings, allowed two hits and walked five with six strikeouts, and got his seventh win. The combined four-hit shutout gave the Braves their eighth team shutout of the season -- tied with the Rangers and Tigers for the most in the Majors.
Fewest Appearances to Reach 200 career Saves
In his 359th career appearance, Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon recorded his 200th career save Tuesday, as the Red Sox beat the Yankees, 6-4. Papelbon has reached the 200-save plateau faster than any other pitcher in history.
Boston's Jon Lester (three runs on eight hits in six innings) became the American League's first eight-game winner and improved his career record to 69-27. Since 1893, Lester's winning percentage (.7187) is the fifth best for any pitcher through his first six seasons, with a minimum of 100 games started. He trails only Johnny Allen (.739), Whitey Ford (.734), Ron Guidry (.724) and Dwight Gooden (.7194).
Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz clubbed his 14th home run of the season to tie Paul Konerko and Nelson Cruz for fifth most in the AL. It was Ortiz's 33rd career home run against the Yankees, tying him with Charlie Gehringer, Rudy York, Cal Ripken, Jr. and Carlos Delgado for the 29th most vs. the Yankees since 1919. Jimmie Foxx, with 70, had the most.
Derek Jeter went 2-for-5 on Tuesday vs. Boston to increase his career hit total to 2,988.
Jeter's first hit -- a single in the second -- tied him with Sam Rice for 28th on the all-time list, at 2,987. Jeter then passed Rice with a single in the fourth. When Rice finished his career after the 1934 season, his 2,987 hits were seventh most all-time.
Jeter now has 284 career hits against the Red Sox. That total ties him with Bill Dickey and Eddie Yost for the 22nd most against Boston since 1919. Goose Goslin, with 406, had the most.
St. Louis slugger Albert Pujols homered for the fourth straight game Tuesday vs. the Astros, and he now has 14 homers for the season, which rank fourth in the National League.
It was the eighth time in his career Pujols has hit a home run in four straight games, with a career-high five-game streak happening in 2007. Over this most recent stretch, Pujols has five home runs and eight RBIs.
Cardinals shortstop Ryan Theriot went 1-for-5 with a double to extend his hitting streak to 20 games. It marked the 42nd time since 1920 a Cardinals player had hit in at least 20 straight (either in a single season or over two seasons). The franchise mark was a 33-game hit streak by Rogers Hornsby in 1922.
Making his first career start (he had made three relief appearances), the Dodgers' Rubby De La Rosa worked around five walks and four hits to allow a run in five innings to notch the win Tuesday against the Phillies.
Making his first career start (he had made his MLB debut the game before, entering as a pinch-runner), Dodgers shortstop Dee Gordon went 3-for-5 and scored a run against Philadelphia. Gordon singled to lead off the game in his first career plate appearance.
Here and there
In addition to the Braves' 1-0 win, the Indians also defeated the Twins, 1-0, on Tuesday. The two contests brought the total to 18 Major League games that have ended with a 1-0 score this season. At this point in 2010, there had been 16 such games.
In his first start as a leadoff hitter, J.J. Hardy homered to the begin the game and helped the Orioles to a 4-0 win over the Athletics on Tuesday.
Arizona's Kelly Johnson went 2-for-5 and hit his 12th home run of the year Tuesday vs. the Pirates. Over the past two seasons, Johnson's 38 home runs are fourth most for any second baseman, behind Robinson Cano (41), Rickie Weeks (40) and Dan Uggla (40).
A game after collecting a season-high 18 hits in a 13-7 win over Texas, Detroit set a new season high with 20 hits in an 8-1 victory over the Rangers on Tuesday. It marked the first time since Aug. 11-12, 1993, that the Tigers had back-to-back games with at least 18 hits. In those two games, they had 18 in a 15-5 win over the Orioles and followed that performance with a 20-hit attack in a 17-11 victory over Baltimore.
White Sox veteran Omar Vizquel (44 years, 44 days) on Tuesday became the 14th-oldest player in the live-ball era to hit a triple. Nick Altrock, at 48 years and 15 days on Sept. 30, 1924, is the oldest. That triple came in Altrock's only plate appearance of the season.
The Mets' Jose Reyes went 2-for-5 with two RBIs and collected his 11th triple of the season Tuesday in a 2-1 win over the Brewers. Reyes' 11 triples are tied for the sixth most since 1919 for a player through his team's first 60 games. Hall of Famer Paul Waner holds the all-time mark with 13, set in 1927.
Tampa Bay's Johnny Damon went 3-for-5 with two doubles and a triple Tuesday against the Angels. Damon, who has reached base in 33 straight games, has 217 career games with three or more hits -- fourth most among active players behind Jeter (254), Ivan Rodriguez (232) and Alex Rodriguez (229).
Roger Schlueter is senior researcher for MLB Productions. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.