The 20-strikeout game is one of the rarest happenings in baseball, and one of my favorite. In fact, it’s so rare that it’s only happened three times (four if you count Randy Johnson’s gem that went into extra innings in 2001). Two of those games were pitched by the same man. Of course, it was approximately 20 years ago, on April 29th 1986 that Roger Clemens became the first to strike out 20 in a single game. Dan Shaughnessy, with his usual flair for the dramatic, recounts the night in a Globe article. Anyway, think maybe we’ll be seeing him back in a Sox uniform this summer? Now that would be an event, indeed. Heck, last night we gave Doug Mirabelli a veritable hero’s welcome back to RSN, can you imagine what would happen with the rocket? Alas, it’s probably just wishful thinking.
NESN actually rebroadcast the 1986 game last week, but I never got around to setting the tivo. It can be watched on mlb.com as part of the Baseball’s Best collection though. I wonder if anyone out there has a bittorrent of it. Of course now that I mentioned that, the commisioner of baseball is going to be stopping by soon with some big dudes wielding bats.