Complete Game

In baseball, a complete game (denoted by CG) is the act of a pitcher pitching an entire game without the benefit of a relief pitcher.

In the early 20th century, it was common for most good Major League Baseball (MLB) pitchers to pitch a complete game almost every start. Pitchers were expected to complete games they started. Over the course of the 20th century, complete games became less common, to the point where a good modern pitcher typically achieves only 1 or 2 complete games per season. (In the 2009 MLB season, 3.1% of starts were complete games) To put this in perspective, as recently as the 1980s, 10–15 complete games a year by a star pitcher was not unheard of, and in 1980, Oakland Athletics pitcher Rick Langford threw 22 consecutive complete games. Years earlier, Robin Roberts of the Philadelphia Phillies threw 28 consecutive complete games, spanning the 1952 and 1953 seasons.

This change has been brought about by strict adherence to pitch counts as a basis for removing a pitcher, even though he may appear to be pitching well, and new pitching philosophies in general. Many have come to believe that the risk of arm injuries becomes far more prevalent after a pitcher has thrown 100 to 120 pitches in a single game. Though Hall-of-Famer Nolan Ryan once threw well over 200 pitches in a single game (a 1974 contest in which he pitched 13 innings), it is now rare for a manager to allow a pitcher to throw more than 120 pitches in a start. Former pitcher Carl Erskine noted the increase in ex-pitchers on coaching staffs since the 1950s, whom he considered better evaluators of a pitchers' ability to pitch late into games. Given this, sabermetricians generally regard Cy Young's total of 749 complete games as the career baseball record most unlikely to ever be broken. Further supporting the belief is that only three pitchers (Young, Ryan, and Don Sutton) even made at least 749 starts in their careers.

James Shields threw a total of 11 complete games in the 2011 season for the Tampa Bay Rays, becoming the first pitcher to reach double digits in a single season since CC Sabathia threw 10 complete games for the Cleveland Indians and Milwaukee Brewers in 2008. The last pitcher to throw as many as 15 complete games in a single season was Curt Schilling, who accomplished that feat for the Philadelphia Phillies in 1998. The last pitcher to throw 20 complete games in a single season was Fernando Valenzuela, who did so for the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1986. The last pitcher to throw 25 complete games in a season was Rick Langford, who had 28 for the Oakland Athletics in 1980. The last pitcher to throw 30 complete games in a season was Catfish Hunter, who did so for the New York Yankees in 1975.

Read more about Complete Game:  Historical Trend, Career Leaders, Active Career Leaders, Single-season Leaders, Other Records

Other articles related to "complete game, games, complete games, game":

Complete Game - Other Records
... Jack Taylor completed 187 consecutive games he started between 1901 and 1906 ... Joe Oeschger share the record for the longest complete game, achieved when they pitched against each other in a 26-inning marathon that ended in a 1-1 tie on May 1, 1920 ...
Dave Frost
1978, and went 5-4 with a 2.58 earned run average in 11 games (10 starts) for the Angels ... Career totals for 99 games pitched include a 33-37 record, 84 games started, 16 complete games, 3 shutouts, 1 save, and 7 games finished ... the Oakland A's (July 3, 1979) an 8-strikeout, no walk complete game win (10-1) vs ...
Mike Wegener
... were as a starter, but he did relieve in 15 games ... Career highlights include a four-hit, complete game shutout against the San Francisco Giants (June 14, 1969) going 3-for-4 with 4 RBI and pitching the first 7.2 innings of an 11–4 victory over the New. 10, 1969) a three-hit, seven strikeout complete game against the Chicago Cubs, winning 8–2 (September 15, 1969) a seven-hit, six strikeout complete game ...
Sun Dong-Yeol - Amateur Career
... He tossed a six-hit complete game with 11 strikeouts in a 3-1 win over United States in Game 1 of the final ... championship by defeating USA 3-2 in Game 2 as well, and Sun shared the MVP Award with Team USA ace Todd Burns ... in the event, posting a 0.31 ERA in 29.0 innings pitched and racking up 3 complete game wins ...
Chicago White Sox Roster - Franchise History - The 1917 World Champions - 1917 World Series
... The White Sox won Game 1 of the Series in Chicago 2–1 behind a complete game by Cicotte ... The White Sox beat the Giants in Game 2 by a score of 7–2 behind another complete game effort by Faber to take a 2–0 lead in the series ... Back in New York for Game 3, Cicotte again threw a complete game, but the White Sox could not muster a single run against Giants starter Rube Benton and lost 2–0 ...

Famous quotes containing the words game and/or complete:

    Old age is far more than white hair, wrinkles, the feeling that it is too late and the game finished, that the stage belongs to the rising generations. The true evil is not the weakening of the body, but the indifference of the soul.
    André Maurois (1885–1967)

    For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not first sit down and estimate the cost, to see whether he has enough to complete it?
    Bible: New Testament, Luke 14:28.