”I pitched well, I got a hit and we won the ballgame. It doesn’t get much better than that,” said excited new St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Tyler Lyons on Wednesday night.
In his first Major League game, the 24-year-old left-hander limited the San Diego Padres to one run and four hits over seven innings. Lyons also contributed a single in the top of the sixth inning as part of St. Louis’ 14-hit attack.
With the able assistance of researcher Tom Orf, we bring you the list of eight, now nine, Cardinals pitchers who in their MLB debut:
- Started and went at least seven innings
- Allowed one or no runs
- Picked up the win
- Got a hit
|Tyler Lyons||5/22/2013||SDP||W 5-3||GS-7 ,W||7||4||1||1||1||4||1||68||1B|
|Andy Rincon||9/15/1980||CHC||W 5-1||CG 9 ,W||9||5||1||1||2||4||0||75||1B|
|Eric Rasmussen||7/21/1975||SDP||W 4-0||SHO9 ,W||9||7||0||0||1||7||0||79||1B, RBI|
|Jerry Reuss||9/27/1969||MON||W 2-1||GS-7 ,W||7||2||0||0||3||3||0||73||1B, RBI|
|Larry Jackson||1955-04-17 (2)||CHC||W 14-1||CG 9 ,W||9||4||1||1||1||3||0||77||1B, BB, R|
|Stu Miller||8/12/1952||CHC||W 1-0||SHO9 ,W||9||6||0||0||2||4||0||77||1B|
|Jackie Collum||9/21/1951||CHC||W 6-0||SHO9 ,W||9||2||0||0||5||3||0||81||1B(2), R(2)|
|Bill McGee||9/29/1935||CHC||W 2-1||CG 9 ,W||9||3||1||1||1||2||0||78||1B|
|Dizzy Dean||9/28/1930||PIT||W 3-1||CG 9 ,W||9||3||1||1||3||5||0||79||1B, R|
The last time this combination occurred was in the MLB premiere of Andy Rincon back in September 1980. It was the first of Rincon’s eight career wins as a major leaguer (in 20 appearances over parts of three seasons).
There was a very interesting oddity in the debut of Eric Rasmussen (“Don’t call me Harry”) on July 21, 1975. That game was played under protest by the Cardinals when Ted Simmons’ fourth-inning home run was taken off the books. San Diego manager John McNamara pointed out to the umpires that the fat part of Simmons’ bat was grooved.
Since the Cards went on to win, 4-0, the protest was moot. The victim of the home run that wasn’t and losing Padres pitcher that day was none other than current Cardinals minor league pitching coordinator Brent Strom. (Coincidentally, I interviewed Strom just last week which you can check out over at the main site – if you subscribe.)
Oh yeah, amid all that, Rasmussen spun a shutout.
Like a number of these outings, Jackie Collum‘s 1951 debut occurred as the season was in its final days. The left-hander not only had the best of these pitching performances as measured by an 81 Game Score, but he also was the only of these first-game hurlers to collect multiple hits, two singles, and crossed home twice.
Then there was the first-ever Cardinal to complete this combination. You have heard of him. Having already clinched the pennant, the Cardinals called upon a 20-year-old named Dizzy Dean to make his MLB debut on the final day of the 1930 regular season.
Dean threw a complete-game three-hitter, allowing the Pittsburgh Pirates just one run. Dean also singled and scored a run in St. Louis’ 3-1 win. Despite that, the Cardinals did not think the brash Dean was ready for the bigs and he did not return until 1932. But that is a story for another day.
I doubt anyone would expect a Dean-like Hall of Fame career from Lyons, but the Cardinals getting more than they received from Rincon is not too much for them to hope, is it?