Most Strikeouts Ever Thrown in a Single Game
by Nick Browne
When a pitcher is in the zone, it’s a thing of beauty. Hearing the thump of the ball on the catcher’s mitt as the ball whizzes by yet another strikeout victim is truly awe-inspiring. The great ones could take over a game from the first batter to the last. These five pitchers dominated in every sense of the word.
Kerry Wood, Cubs – 20 – May 6, 1998
Wood dominated the Houston Astros during his 20K outing. His impressive, record-tying performance included a 2-0 victory for the Cubs.
Roger Clemens, Red Sox – 20 – September 18, 1996
Clemens was simply unhittable in this game. He whiffed 20 batters for the second time in his career while leading the Red Sox to a 4-0 win over the Detroit Tigers.
Roger Clemens, Red Sox – 20 – April 29, 1986
The first pitcher to register 20 strikeouts in a single game, Clemens cruised through the Seattle Mariners’ lineup, en route to a 3-1 win.
Randy Johnson, Mariners – 19 – August 8, 1997
The second time Johnson registered 19 strikeouts in less than two months, “The Big Unit” destroyed the Chicago White Sox lineup on the way to a 5-0 win.
Randy Johnson, Mariners – 19 – June 24, 1997
The first time Johnson rang up 19 batters in the 1997 season actually happened during a loss. Although he struck out 19 hitters, the Mariners lost 4-1 to the Oakland A’s.