Sep 21, 2014; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Corey Kluber (28) pitches in the third inning against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
With his 14-strikeout massacre of the Minnesota Twins on Sunday, Corey Kluber became the first pitcher in ten years to strike out 14 batters in back-to-back starts. The last pitchers to do that were some guys named Randy Johnson and Pedro Martinez. The K parade pushed his total for the year to 258, good for tenth place on the Tribe’s all-time list for strikeouts in a single season.
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Kluber joins Luis Tiant, Herb Score, Sam McDowell and Bob Feller as the only Indians to strike out over 250 batters in a single season. C.C. Sabathia never did it, and neither did Bartolo Colon or Cliff Lee. In fact, no Cleveland Indian has done it in over 40 years. The last Wahoo to do it was Sam McDowell all the way back in 1970.
Kluber’s 2014 strikeout total of 258 is more than the number of times teammate Michael Brantley has struck out in the past four years.
With one start remaining, Kluber needs only seven more strikeouts to pass Luis Tiant for sixth place on the Tribe’s all-time list for strikeouts in a single season.
The Tribe ace becomes arbitration-eligible for the first time prior to the 2016 season. The earliest he can become a free agent is the 2018-2019 offseason.