Greinke ties record for consecutive starts with two or fewer runs

By Mike Axisa | Baseball Writer

Greinke shut the D-Backs down on Friday night.
Greinke shut the D-Backs down on Friday night. (USATSI)

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With Clayton Kershaw sidelined by a back problem, former AL Cy Young award winner Zack Greinke has had to step in to serve as the Dodgers' ace. He is more than up to the task, and on Friday night he held the Diamondbacks to one run in six innings, lowering his season ERA to 2.42.

Dating back to last July, Greinke has now allowed no more than two runs in each of his last 16 starts. If that sounds like a lot, it sure is. It is tied for the all-time record, in fact. Here is the leaderboard, courtesy of the Baseball-Reference Play Index (full list):

1Ferdie Schupp1916-07-131917-05-1716122135.1741612327530.80NYG
2Zack Greinke2013-07-302014-04-121510196.0751919179481.78LAD
3Mat Latos2010-06-102010-09-07159196.16217162411461.49SDP
4Al Benton1945-04-191945-08-0615112118.0861613354630.99DET
5Greg Maddux1993-08-111994-04-1414111112.1791815188221.20ATL
6Mike Scott1986-05-091986-07-071463109.16720182211561.48HOU
7Jose Fernandez2013-07-132014-04-05139186.25013122310541.25MIA
8Josh Johnson2010-05-132010-07-22137291.16798139420.79FLA
9Ubaldo Jimenez2009-10-022010-06-061312193.1541010338820.96COL
10Johan Santana2008-09-012009-05-11138290.17017132610731.30NYM
11Greg Maddux1995-05-231995-07-291390105.272141489141.19ATL
12Dwight Gooden1985-08-311986-05-061391111.0691210229520.81NYM
13Tom Seaver1971-07-171971-09-161383114.17215122511450.94NYM
Provided by View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 4/19/2014.

Baseball-Reference has not yet been updated to included Friday's game, but Greinke has indeed tied Schupp at the top of the list. His ERA during this 16-start stretch is now 1.76 in 102 innings. Notice that Jose Fernandez recently had his run of 13 straight starts with two or fewer runs ended less than two weeks ago.

The last time Greinke allowed more than two runs in a start was last July 25, when the Reds got to him for four runs in seven innings. In case you're wondering, the all-time record for consecutive starts with three or fewer runs is 26 by Chris Short for the 1967-68 Phillies.

Obviously this isn't a punch your ticket to Cooperstown piece of history, but it is a fun little fact. Sixteen straight starts (and counting) without allowing more than two runs is pretty damn impressive.

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