clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

What do Francisco Liriano and Andy Pettitte Have in Common?

Blue Jays lefty becomes one of six starters to fail to record at least two outs against Rays

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at Tampa Bay Rays Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Blue Jays pitcher Francisco Liriano, making his first start of 2017, recorded one meager out in last night’s run fest at Tropicana Field, which the Rays won 10-8.

In just one-third of an inning, the left-hander allowed three hits, five earned runs, four walks, and just one punch out. Evan Longoria touched up the former All-Star for a two-run homer in that first inning before Brad Miller doubled home Rickie Weeks Jr. and Derek Norris (who both walked before Miller’s at-bat).

The Blue Jays skipper allowed his 33-year-old starter to face just two more batters — resulting in a Tim Beckham walk and Daniel Robertson’s first career hit — before yanking him for Dominic Leone. Liriano sports a 135.00 ERA to start the season

However, Liriano is in good company. According to Baseball Reference, there had previously been five outings since 2000 in which a starter recorded one out or fewer in an outing against the Rays, including a couple of All Stars.

August 10, 2000: Joe Mays

Mays had a nice run with the Minnesota Twins from 1999-2005, which included a 17-win all-star campaign in 2001. But his start against the then-Devil Rays on August 10, 2000, was not among his highlights.

Minnesota Twins v Cleveland Indians Photo by David Maxwell/Getty Images

In just one-third of an inning, Mays surrendered four earned runs and three walks but did not allow a hit. After a hitting a batter with the bases loaded, thus allowing a run to score, Mays was replaced by Jason Smith. He promptly allowed a sacrifice fly and a three-run home run to Aubrey Huff. The Rays went on to win 10-4 at Tropicana Field behind seven strong innings from Tanyon Sturtze.

September 26, 2001: Andy Pettitte

This is one of two games on this list the Rays lost despite a rough start from the opposing hurler. Yankees legend Andy Pettitte lasted just three pitches; a leadoff single from Brent Abernathy preceded a line drive off the bat of Ben Grieve, which struck the winningest postseason pitcher of all-time on his left elbow.

Pettitte immediately left the game and was replaced by fellow lefty Ted Lilly. He proceeded to throw 7.2 sparkling innings, allowing just one run in a 5-1 Yankees win.

Royals v Yankees X Pettitte

"It would have been real nasty if it hit him on the bone," manager Joe Torre told Newsday about the damage the line drive could have caused.

Just over two weeks after 9/11, the Yankees and New York City were still in the grieving stages and preparing for the postseason that resulted in a devastating Game 7 walk-off loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks in the World Series.

July 8, 2005: Nate Robertson

Just one pitch into the start, the left-handed Robertson was ejected after throwing behind legendary Rays outfield Carl Crawford.

"It's just a pitch that got away from me," Robertson said as he denied throwing at Crawford intentionally (via CBS Sports). "Bottom line, it just got away from me."

Detroit Tigers v Los Angeles Dodgers Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

The Tigers used four relievers, including future Rays closer Fernando Rodney, to record 27 outs en route to a 7-3 win over the Devil Rays. Scott Kazmir allowed five earned runs in three innings that day to record his seventh loss.

"You know what? We won the game, and it's a good win," Robertson said after the win, which extended Tampa Bay’s losing streak to 10 games. “

Crawford stole his 27th base of the season in the game off Rodney.

July 21, 2006: Russ Ortiz

With future Rays pitcher Erik Bedard out with food poisoning, the veteran Ortiz made an emergency start for the Baltimore Orioles. He did not record an out as he surrendered five hits, six earned runs, and one walk.

The aforementioned Crawford launched a two-run HR in the first inning and was one of six batters Ortiz faced and didn’t retire. The Rays were helped by a grand slam from Jorge Cantu and additional homers from Dioner Navarro and Julio Lugo in a 14-7 blowout win.

Chicago White Sox vs Baltimore Orioles - July 29, 2006 Photo by A. Messerschmidt/Getty Images

"As much as I'd like to ... I can't," Ortiz said about not making excuses after his spot start (via CBS Sports). "I had plenty of time to do my normal routine."

Ortiz made 20 appearances (five starts) for the O‘s in 2006 before seeing action in parts of 2007, 2009, and 2010.

Righty Casey Fossum, who allowed two first-inning runs himself, settled down to record his fifth win of the 2006 season. The win snapped a seven-game losing streak for the Rays.

September 15, 2007: Horacio Ramirez

The veteran Ramirez followed a trend with most pitchers on this list by not recording an out as he faced just four batters and threw 20 pitches. Ramirez allowed singles to Akinori Iwamura and Crawford before walking Carlos Pena and allowing an RBI single to Melvin Upton.

Meanwhile, Scott Kazmir allowed one unearned run in six strong innings as the Rays played spoiler in Seattle’s bid for an American League Wild Card spot with a 6-2 win. That season was arguably Kazmir’s best as he led the AL with 239 strikeouts and made a career-high 34 starts.

Brendan Harris contributed a solo home run while Jonny Gomes and Delmon Young both added multiple RBIs in the effort. Also, Ramirez’s poor outing resulted in him losing his spot in the starting rotation.