Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander of Manakin, VA had an historic night on the mound Saturday in a 6-3 Astros win over the Los Angeles Angels at the Angel Stadium of Anaheim. On the same night, Verlander became the 18th pitcher in Major League Baseball history to record 3000 strikeouts in a career and the 19th pitcher since 1900 to record 300 strikeouts in a single season.
Verlander began the night with 288 strikeouts in 2019 and 2994 strikeouts in his career. He recorded his 3000th strikeout in the bottom of the fourth inning when he struck out Angels right fielder Kole Calhoun. However in an interesting twist, Calhoun reached first base on the strikeout as there was a wild pitch by Verlander. It was the first time ever that a pitcher recorded his 3000th strikeout on a wild pitch.
Verlander then got Calhoun to strikeout swinging again in the sixth inning for his 300th strikeout of the season and 12th of the game. However on this occasion, Colhoun did not reach first base.
The Astros only became the second team in Major League Baseball history to have two players on their roster with 300 strikeouts in a season. The other Astros pitcher to reach the milestone was Gerrit Cole of Newport Beach, CA, who finished up the season with 326 strikeouts. Verlander and Cole were the only pitchers in Major League Baseball this season with 300 strikeouts.
The only other team that had two pitchers record 300 strikeouts or more in the same season was the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2002. That season Curt Schilling of Anchorage, AK had 316 strikeouts and Randy Johnson of Walnut Creek, CA had 334 strikeouts.
It was a memorable weekend for the Houston Astros organization as well. The Astros won a franchise record 107th game of the season on Sunday, an 8-5 win over the Angels. The previous Astros record was 103 wins in 2018.
It was also the fourth time in Astros franchise history that the team reached 100 wins in a season. They had 102 wins in 1998 and 101 wins in 2017.