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Brian Walton's news and commentary on the St. Louis Cardinals (TM) and their minor league system

Lohse joins select Cardinals few with April gem

St. Louis Cardinals right-hander Kyle Lohse pitched a masterpiece at Busch Stadium on Thursday afternoon, tossing a two-hit shutout at the Washington Nationals. Both hits were singles. The 32-year-old walked two and struck out six. He threw 72 strikes among his 111 pitches.  St. Louis ended the day on top by a 5-0 score.

Lohse is now 3-1 on the season with a 2.01 ERA.

Lohse’s performance was his best-ever outing in his 11-year career. It also ranks among the 17 top April pitching performances in the history of the Cardinals franchise, going back to 1919. Further, it is one of only 14 such shutouts.

The last Cardinal to toss an April two-hitter or better did it exactly 22 years prior, as Jose DeLeon stymied Montreal on a pair of hits on April 21, 1989.

In the list below, the Cardinals April leaders with two two-hitters or better each are Bob Forsch, Ernie Brogio and Max Lanier. One of Lanier’s April two-hitters was not a shutout.

Only Broglio, who became most famous for being dealt to the Cubs in the Lou Brock trade the next June, had two gems in the same season, 1963. Lohse will likely have just one more start this month in an attempt to match Broglio.

Forsch owns the Cardinals’ only April no-hitter, thrown against the Philadelphia Phillies on April 16, 1978.

Hall of Famer Bob Gibson must have typically heated up with the weather as he managed just one of these April performances. It was very early in his 17-year career, on April 26, 1962, and he allowed two runs that day. Interestingly, another Hall of Famer, Dizzy Dean, is not to be found here, nor are current aces Chris Carpenter and Adam Wainwright.

St. Louis Cardinals, two-hits or less, complete game, April, 1919-current

Pitcher Date Opp Result IP H R ER BB SO
Kyle Lohse 4/21/2011 WAS W 5-0 9 2 0 0 2 6
Jose DeLeon 4/21/1989 MON W 1-0 9 2 0 0 1 6
Bob Forsch 4/16/1978 PHI W 5-0 9 0 0 0 2 3
Bob Forsch 4/9/1975 MON W 4-0 9 2 0 0 0 6
Mike Torrez 4/15/1970 MON W 10-0 9 1 0 0 6 3
Al Jackson 4/25/1967 HOU W 4-0 9 1 0 0 3 3
Ernie Broglio 4/23/1963 HOU W 15-0 9 2 0 0 3 2
Ernie Broglio 4/9/1963 NYM W 7-0 9 2 0 0 2 8
Bob Gibson 4/26/1962 HOU W 3-2 9 2 2 2 2 5
Harvey Haddix 4/25/1956 CHC W 6-0 9 2 0 0 5 3
Tom Poholsky 4/25/1951 PIT W 4-0 9 2 0 0 2 0
Max Lanier 4/18/1944 PIT W 2-0 9 2 0 0 2 3
Max Lanier 4/26/1941 CHC W 6-2 9 2 2 2 4 7
Lon Warneke 4/29/1939 CHC W 2-0 9 1 0 0 0 3
Bill Hallahan 4/18/1930 CHC W 11-1 9 2 1 0 9 11
Flint Rhem 4/23/1927 CHC W 7-0 9 2 0 0 3 4
Jesse Haines 4/13/1927 CHC W 5-0 9 2 0 0 1 4

Thanks to researcher Tom Orf for providing the above table.

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