You Are Here > Baseball-Reference.com > Blog >

SITE NEWS: We are moving all of our site and company news into a single blog for Sports-Reference.com. We'll tag all B-R content, so you can quickly and easily find the content you want.

Also, our existing B-R blog rss feed will be redirected to the new site's feed.

Baseball-Reference.com » Sports Reference

For more from Andy and the gang, check out their new site High Heat Stats.

Jamie Moyer’s incredible record-setting performance

Posted by Andy on May 8, 2010

Jamie Moyer has pitched himself into the record books and I suspect he's going to stay there for quite a long time.

Last night he became the oldest player in history to throw a complete-game shutout.

Rk Player Age Date Tm Opp Rslt IP H R ER BB SO HR Pit Str GSc
1 Jamie Moyer 47.170 2010-05-07 PHI ATL W 7-0 9.0 2 0 0 0 5 0 105 71 88
2 Phil Niekro 46.188 1985-10-06 NYY TOR W 8-0 9.0 4 0 0 3 5 0 81
3 Charlie Hough 46.160 1994-06-14 FLA STL W 7-0 9.0 5 0 0 1 9 0 127 73 85
4 Satchel Paige 46.075 1952-09-20 (2) SLB CHW W 4-0 9.0 8 0 0 4 5 0 72
5 Satchel Paige 46.030 1952-08-06 SLB DET W 1-0 12.0 7 0 0 2 9 0 95
6 Jack Quinn 45.076 1928-09-15 PHA CLE W 5-0 9.0 6 0 0 0 0 0 75
7 Jack Quinn 45.040 1928-08-10 PHA WSH W 8-0 9.0 4 0 0 0 0 0 79
8 Phil Niekro 45.023 1984-04-24 NYY KCR W 4-0 9.0 8 0 0 1 8 0 78
9 Gaylord Perry 44.353 1983-09-03 (1) KCR TEX W 5-0 9.0 6 0 0 1 4 0 78
10 Jack Quinn 44.319 1928-05-15 PHA CLE W 5-0 9.0 6 0 0 0 2 0 77
11 Jack Quinn 44.300 1928-04-26 PHA WSH W 10-0 9.0 7 0 0 0 0 0 73
12 Nolan Ryan 44.131 1991-06-11 TEX CHW W 2-0 9.0 6 0 0 1 10 0 116 80 84
13 Nolan Ryan 44.090 1991-05-01 TEX TOR W 3-0 9.0 0 0 0 2 16 0 122 83 101
14 Tommy John 44.078 1987-08-08 NYY DET W 7-0 9.0 2 0 0 1 3 0 85
15 Jack Quinn 44.066 1927-09-05 (2) PHA WSH W 3-0 9.0 7 0 0 1 2 0 74
16 Jack Quinn 44.059 1927-08-29 PHA DET W 5-0 9.0 3 0 0 3 2 0 80
17 Jack Quinn 44.046 1927-08-16 (2) PHA CLE W 8-0 9.0 10 0 0 1 2 0 68
18 Charlie Hough 43.211 1991-08-04 CHW BAL W 1-0 9.0 5 0 0 2 7 0 124 72 82
19 Jamie Moyer 43.196 2006-06-02 SEA KCR W 4-0 9.0 2 0 0 1 2 0 93 57 84
20 Phil Niekro 43.183 1982-10-01 ATL SDP W 4-0 9.0 3 0 0 0 8 0 89
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 5/8/2010.

Even though we don't have box scores for every single year yet, multiple media outlets have already confirmed that nobody older has ever thrown a shutout. Other than Moyer himself, I don't see anybody likely to throw a shutout at an older age anytime soon, and I suspect this record is going to stand for a long, long time.

Moyer's game score of 88 was great although it doesn't rank near the top of best Game Scores for a 40-year-old pitcher:

Rk Player Age Date Tm Opp Rslt App,Dec IP H R ER BB SO HR Pit Str GSc
1 Nolan Ryan 44.090 1991-05-01 TEX TOR W 3-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 0 0 0 2 16 0 122 83 101
2 Randy Johnson 40.251 2004-05-18 ARI ATL W 2-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 0 0 0 0 13 0 117 87 100
3 Nolan Ryan 43.131 1990-06-11 TEX OAK W 5-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 0 0 0 2 14 0 130 86 99
4 Nolan Ryan 43.085 1990-04-26 TEX CHW W 1-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 1 0 0 2 16 0 127 87 99
5 Randy Johnson 40.004 2003-09-14 ARI COL W 5-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 1 0 0 1 12 0 123 90 96
6 Satchel Paige 46.030 1952-08-06 SLB DET W 1-0 12.0 7 0 0 2 9 0 95
7 Nolan Ryan 42.242 1989-09-30 TEX CAL W 2-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 3 0 0 0 13 0 120 79 94
8 Nolan Ryan 42.156 1989-07-06 TEX CAL W 3-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 3 0 0 2 12 0 126 83 91
9 Phil Niekro 41.104 1980-07-14 ATL HOU W 2-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 2 0 0 3 11 0 91
10 Randy Johnson 40.219 2004-04-16 ARI SDP W 5-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 2 0 0 1 8 0 116 80 90
11 Warren Spahn 40.005 1961-04-28 MLN SFG W 1-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 0 0 0 2 5 0 90
12 Curt Schilling 40.205 2007-06-07 BOS OAK W 1-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 1 0 0 0 4 0 100 71 89
13 Don Sutton 41.068 1986-06-09 CAL CHW W 3-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 2 0 0 2 8 0 89
14 Phil Niekro 43.183 1982-10-01 ATL SDP W 4-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 3 0 0 0 8 0 89
15 Phil Niekro 40.113 1979-07-23 (2) ATL PIT W 8-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 2 0 0 1 7 0 89
16 Warren Spahn 40.154 1961-09-24 (1) MLN CHC W 8-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 2 0 0 1 7 0 89
17 Jamie Moyer 47.170 2010-05-07 PHI ATL W 7-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 2 0 0 0 5 0 105 71 88
18 Early Wynn 42.142 1962-05-28 CHW CLE W 2-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 3 0 0 0 6 0 87
19 Dazzy Vance 40.144 1931-07-26 (2) BRO CIN W 5-0 9.0 3 0 0 1 7 0 87
20 Red Faber 40.262 1929-05-26 CHW DET W 2-0 9.0 1 0 0 0 2 0 87
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
Generated 5/8/2010.

Just 5 strikeouts ain't gonna get it done when competing again the likes of Nolan Ryan. I wonder when the next time will be that we see a 44-year-old strike out 16 batters in a game? It could be a heck of a long time for that, too.

I find a beautiful symmetry in Moyer's start given the passing of Robin Roberts. Moyer managed to stave off adding to his career total of 498 homers and joining Roberts in the 500-HR club. Moyer will be in there, no doubt, probably in a matter of a couple of weeks.

For a back-of-the-rotation guy, Moyer has put up good numbers so far (about league average) and I hope he keeps on pitching for a long time to come.

This entry was posted on Saturday, May 8th, 2010 at 7:49 am and is filed under Game Finders. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

26 Responses to “Jamie Moyer’s incredible record-setting performance”

  1. Here are all of Moyer's career shutouts:

    Rk Date Tm Opp Rslt App,Dec IP H R ER BB SO HR Pit Str GSc
    1 2010-05-07 PHI ATL W 7-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 2 0 0 0 5 0 105 71 88
    2 2006-06-02 SEA KCR W 4-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 2 0 0 1 2 0 93 57 84
    3 2002-07-01 SEA KCR W 7-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 5 0 0 0 3 0 113 77 80
    4 2002-06-10 SEA STL W 10-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 5 0 0 0 5 0 123 80 82
    5 1998-09-17 SEA OAK W 8-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 4 0 0 0 4 0 83
    6 1998-06-12 SEA OAK W 5-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 3 0 0 0 5 0 86
    7 1998-05-02 SEA DET W 4-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 3 0 0 2 7 0 116 72 86
    8 1993-07-06 BAL KCR W 8-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 4 0 0 0 4 0 96 69 83
    9 1988-06-03 CHC NYM W 5-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 3 0 0 0 4 0 87 58 85
    10 1986-08-16 CHC MON W 5-0 SHO9 ,W 9.0 2 0 0 0 4 0 87
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 5/8/2010.

    I wonder which other pitchers have had CG SHO 24 years apart?

  2. BTW, These 10 shutouts rank in Moyer's top 16 game scores, and his top 9 scores are all shutouts. He has had very few high-strikeout games.

    He's had just 4 games with double-digit strikeouts:

    Rk Date Tm Opp Rslt App,Dec IP H R ER BB SO HR Pit Str GSc
    1 1989-04-08 TEX TOR W 5-4 GS-8 ,W 8.0 4 4 4 3 13 1 126 80 68
    2 1987-04-13 CHC PHI W 5-2 GS-9 ,W 8.0 2 2 2 6 12 0 76
    3 2002-06-21 SEA HOU W 8-0 GS-7 ,W 7.0 3 0 0 0 11 0 108 65 82
    4 1998-04-06 SEA NYY W 8-0 GS-7 ,W 7.0 3 0 0 1 11 0 81
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 5/8/2010.
  3. Crap!
    No player has ever had more strikeouts than his age...

  4. DoubleDiamond Says:

    I started to post, under the 3,000 hits given up by pitchers blog entry, that Moyer could reach the 500 home run mark last night against Atlanta and that it would be fitting if Jason Heyward hit that 500th (or maybe both #499 and #500) because Moyer's the oldest player in the majors and Heyward, born August 9, 1989, while not the youngest, thanks, at the time, to two Mets players born in October 1989, had the status of being the most recently born player to have homered in the majors. Then I noticed, before posting my comment, that Heyward was hurt and not likely to play last night. So I decided not to post my message.

    Well, Moyer didn't give up any runs, let along home runs, and Heyward lost his status as most recently born player to go yard yesterday, too, as Starlin Castro debuted and homered in his first major league at bat and also became the first major leaguer to have been born in the 1990s.

  5. Michael Bennett Says:

    If Jamie Moyer wins 14 games this year and the next 2 years (he'd be 49), he hits 300 wins. He's averaged 14 wins a year for the past 3 years with the Phils. He's certainly with the right team to be able to do it. At his pace of 14-10 each year he'd need to go 10-8 the rest of this year and he'd ultimately end up at 300-225. What would you do with a record like that over 25 years? The only reason Blyleven, Tommy John, Jim Kaat, etc., aren't in the hall is they didn't reach that magic 300 #. But his ERA will be well over 4. Then you'd have to reconsider Jack Morris who's not in the Hall only because his ERA was upper 3's, but he was a legit #1 for most of his career and a clutch postseason performer. Jamie was a #1 for a couple of years with the M's, a 2 for many more M's years, but a 3-5 the rest of his career. I say he's not a hall of famer even with 300 wins but he changes the conversation in many ways. I might have to reconsider! I'm lovin' it! Think Glavine, Sutton, Wynn, Perry, Niekro, et al.

  6. Satchel was most likely older in 1952. His 1906 birthdate is still in question. If you believe Bill Veeck, he writes in his book Veeck as in Wreck that he researched the birthdate and found that Satchel must have been born before 1900.

  7. Anthony dubbiosi Says:

    Let him pitch against the astros and he'll strike out 16 by the 7th

  8. Michael, that's fascinating stuff. Moyer could become the first 300-game winner not to be enshrined.

  9. The thing about Nolan Ryan is that his 16 strike out game was also a no hitter. Not bad for a 44 year old.

  10. What makes Andy's observation about how few high-K games Jamie has had in his career interesting, is the fact that Moyer is the current active leader in career K's.

    He keeps getting four or five a game, and they add up after a while.

    Who knows how much longer he could go, maybe as an old school "Sunday Starter," ala Ted Lyons, who was 14-6 -- all CGs -- with a 2.10 ERA in 1942.

    Of course, Lyons was a mere sapling, at the tender age of 42!

  11. Tommy John had shutouts in 1964 and 1987 - 23 years apart. I think that's as close as anyone has come to Moyer's feat (I checked Nolan Ryan, 1970 and 1971, a mere 21 years).

  12. Dennis Martinez was 14 days short of being a member of the 20 years apart shutout club.
    http://bbref.com/pi/shareit/BwrQd

  13. In #11, of course I meant 1970 and 1991 for Ryan.

  14. Spartan Bill Says:

    Andy

    If he keeps pitching another 3 uears and gets 300 W, I think the HOF voters will look at him in a new light.

    If he is borderlinem, he will pick up a few votes based on his nice guy personality.

  15. I think it would be a fascinating case. The things going against Moyer are few excellent seasons, no 5-year peak as a top-of-the-line starter, a small amount of post-season success, and little in the way of seasonal award voting. Also many will look at the majority of his achievements to be longevity-based.
    What's weird is Moyer holds the record for being the oldest guy to win 20 games for the first time and that was a long time ago already.

  16. DoubleDiamond Says:

    I just realized that you have to go down to #14 on the first list to find another lefthander, Tommy John. Then Moyer himself is the next lefty after that.

    Randy Johnson and Tom Glavine weren't able to make this list (but I wonder if one of them slipped to #21 as a result of Moyer's feat on Friday).

  17. Subscribe to the play index and you won't have to wonder!

  18. What would you say is the determining factor regarding HoF quals, in terms of games/years it takes to collect "X" number of wins?

    Should it be -- for instance -- 275, however long it takes? If the guy is still pitching effectively enough to be the team leader in victories over the past three seasons, and that team is a repeat pennant winner the last two...

    Moyer is already in the top two percent of all pitchers in career victories. Hitters are never judged in terms of how many ABs it took to get 3,000 hits or 500 homers.

    I know the "He was never among the best two or three pitchers in his league for a prolonged period" argument, regarding Moyer. But, what about the career pile of numbers? He was good enough to get to where he is, which is better than nearly everyone else.

    For my money, John, Blyleven, and Kaat should also be in.

    Perseverence and dedication to craft should also count for something. And, as Spartan Bill says, character should also be worth consideration.

    Which leads to one more thing among Jamie's records: He is (I believe) the only person to win all four of baseball's major humanitarian awards: The Hutch Award, The Lou Gehrig Award, The Roberto Clemente Award, and the Branch Rickey Award.

  19. Interesting take, Jeff. I do think AB are taken into account for hitters. If Vizquel gets 3000 hits he will likely be the first non HOFer to do so. McGwire's got 500 HR but doesn't look like he gets in, although next year's vote after his admission will be interesting.
    I love Moyer and certainly his longevity alone suggests he must have a significant value.

  20. Andy, I somewhat disagree.

    I think Omar eventually gets in, because he is the all-time standard-bearer as a defensive shortstop, as well as a decent offensive producer.

    I feel Mac isn't in, not because of the homer count, but mostly because of the steroids. If he had done it cleanly, though, I think the vote might have come out differently.

  21. Michael Says:

    Andy, fascinating case indeed. Little postseason to be sure, but he was very good in the playoffs with the M's, effectively being their #1 in '01, pitching them past the Indians into the ALCS. Man, if we could have gotten that series back to Seattle like Lou vowed, it would have been Moyer and Garcia for games 6 & 7 and I would have liked our chances at home with them. Look at his postseason WHIP in '01. He was as effective as it gets and he did it all with brains. If he gets into the Hall it will be with the worst stuff and the best mind ever. And you know how players say, "Scoreboard"? Well, if his pace holds for 2 years past '10, you could similarly say, "Record" (300-225).

  22. [...] go back and read the posts and comments about Moyer here and then vote in the poll [...]

  23. I heard someone mention yesterday that Moyer is the first pitcher to throw shutouts in 4 decades (80's, 90's, etc.)

    Moyer's is a record of longevity, but the question I always ask myself about a player for HOF is whether they were among the best of their era for a substantial period of time. I don't think I can say that about Moyer.

  24. In my opinin, both Moyer and Jim Kaat should be in there -- if, that is, Moyer can ever be induced to retire, which might require the services of a medical team and a LOT to tranquilizers. In this era of steroids and all, it is a great relief to see that some of us old coots can still make it just on chutzpah.

  25. Impressive, but John doesn't really belong on this list. True, he was in his forties -- but his surgically built left wing wasn't even a teenager yet at this point. Rock on Moyer! Push it to the half-century mark!

  26. [...] my recent post about Jamie Moyer's complete game shutout, reader JeffW rocked my world by commenting that Moyer is now the active leader in career [...]