From the Boston Globe:
He never had thrown this many pitches in a Red Sox uniform, or for anyone else in almost six years. In 534 big-league starts going back 19 seasons, he’d thrown more pitches just 16 times in his career. In April? Just twice, back in 1998.
So how is it that on a 42-degree night in Cleveland, Curt Schilling at age 39 was left in to throw 133 pitches, and that was without getting through the seventh inning of last night’s 8-6 win over the Indians?
Schilling hadn’t thrown this many pitches since July 7, 2000, when he was with the Phillies and threw 135 against the Orioles. The last Sox pitcher to throw as many pitches was Martinez, who threw 136 on May 1, 2001. Seven weeks later, by the way, he was on the disabled list with a bad shoulder.
But, Schilling insisted, ”This was one of those nights where the line score doesn’t match [what happened on] the field.”
I’m a firm believer that throwing 100 pitches over 6 innings in a 1-0 game against a great hitting team is more stressful than throwing 125 pitches over 7 innings when you’re winning 9-1 against a team with an average offense. So, I’ve never been a slave to a strict pitch count – with a pitcher over the age of 28.
Still, 133 pitches over 30 batters (in 6.2 IP)? That’s like 20 pitches per IP.
Granted, Schilling is a special pitcher. But, it will be interesting to see if this game does have any impact on his performance down the road this season. Yes, he did this back in April 1998 and went on to have the third best season of his career that year.
But, that was at age 31 – and Curt’s 39-years old now.
Let’s see how Schilling is 6 weeks from now on June 7th. By the way, on that date, the Red Sox will be in New York to play the Yankees.