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

Four different Cards relievers with saves in last four wins

When Trever Miller relieved Jason Motte with two outs in the 11th inning Friday night at Atlanta and collected a save, albeit a shaky one, the 37-year-old became the fourth different pitcher to record a save in the St. Louis Cardinals’ last four victories.

Miller followed Fernando Salas, who closed out Thursday’s win in Houston and Eduardo Sanchez, who earned his first MLB save on Wednesday night. In the game immediately prior to Mitchell Boggs’ blown save against the Astros on Tuesday, Boggs closed out the Cincinnati Reds on Sunday night.

Sunday marked both Boggs’ third consecutive save and the first game of the unusual four-man, four-save streak.

As is usually the case, researcher Tom Orf was able to satisfy my curiosity about the uniqueness of the feat.

The Cardinals had a similar stretch in 2005, also in April on almost the same exact dates. That one was led off by incumbent closer Jason Isringhausen and followed by Randy Flores, Julian Tavarez and Al Reyes. Just as in 2011, one loss occurred in the interim.

Since at least 1972, the Cardinals have had no other periods of four saves by four different pitchers in five or fewer games.

St. Louis Cardinals, four different relievers with saves in four consecutive wins over four or five games

2005 Opp W/L Score WP LP Save
Sunday, Apr 24 HOU W 8-5 Morris Backe Isringhausen
Tuesday, Apr 26 MIL W 5-3 Suppan Davis Flores
Wednesday, Apr 27 MIL W 6-3 Carpenter Santos Tavarez
Thursday, Apr 28 MIL L 3-4 Capuano Marquis Turnbow
Friday, Apr 29 @ATL W 6-5 Mulder Hudson Reyes

Will Motte, Ryan Franklin or Miguel Batista be given a chance to extend the streak to five on Saturday or Sunday?

Addendum

When expanding the scope to four or more consecutive Cardinals wins/saves by different pitchers over any number of games, four more examples back to 1960 were found. (Obviously, losses were interspersed.) They follow.

Win# Game# Date Opp W/L Score Save
2 2 4/10/1990 MON W 4-2 Terry
3 4 4/13/1990 @PHI W 11-0 Tewksbury
4 7 4/16/1990 @PIT W 6-4 Horton
5 9 4/18/1990 @PIT W 3-0 Dayley
3 3 4/13/1968 @CHC W 8-5 Willis
4 5 4/15/1968 @ATL W 4-3 Hughes
5 6 4/16/2008 @ATL W 6-2 Hoerner
6 9 4/19/1968 CHC W 9-2 Gilson
52 88 7/17/1967 NYM W 6-4 Briles
53 90 7/19/2007 @CIN W 3-2 Lamabe
54 91 7/20/1967 @CIN W 7-3 Hoerner
55 94 7/23/1967 ATL W 3-2 Willis
53 101 7/30/1964 @CHC W 5-2 Craig
54 104 8/2/1964 CIN W 5-4 Taylor
55 106 8/5/1964 CHC W 4-2 Humphreys
56 107 8/6/1964 CHC W 5-3 Schultz

There have not been saves by five different pitchers in five consecutive Cardinals wins any time since at least 1960. With Salas “repeating” on Saturday, saving the Cardinals win over Atlanta, it will not happen this time, either.

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